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THE National Task Force Against COVID-19 (NTF) said it has begun the process of assessing and evaluating the safety and cost-effectiveness of various vaccines through the Vaccine Expert Panel (VEP).

NTF Chief Implementer and vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said this is in light of the emergence of different COVID-19 variants and the development of reformulated boosters as well as the new generations of vaccines.

He said the VEP will submit this quarter a new COVID-19 vaccine portfolio that will be the basis for procuring the country’s 2022 vaccine supply, as the panel continuously monitors and evaluates both clinical and real-world performance of each vaccine brand.

The NTF has commenced its negotiations with four to five manufacturers in order to secure its initial supply allocation target of at least 90 million doses in 2022.

The task force is aiming to sign non-binding term sheets this month with various vaccine makers to lock in the supply agreements and complete the contracts by year-end.

Meanwhile, the Department of Finance has started preparing the funding arrangement for the procurement of next year’s vaccsupply requirements.

The government has earmarked P45 billion in funds that were sourced through multilateral loans from development partners such as the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

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