The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has allocated $25 million to augment the national government’s fund for the purchase of vaccines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
The ADB on Monday said the fund can be used as an advance payment to the vaccine manufacturers to secure the delivery of vaccine supply.
It said the allotted budget will be taken from the $125 million worth of Health System Enhancement to Address and Limit (HEAL) Covid-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) project, an effort to improve the resilience of the country’s healthcare systems both at the national and local levels, as well as preparedness in handling current and future public health threats.
“Vaccination is the next critical step to protect lives and promote livelihood opportunities,” said ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa. “We stand ready to support the government in these unprecedented times and help the economy navigate back to its pre-pandemic growth path.”
Asawaka also cited the significant improvement of the country’s capacities on testing, tracing, isolating, and treating Covid-19 cases in the past 10 months of the pandemic.
The allocated augmentation fund will go through vaccine access and eligibility requirements under ADB’s Asia Pacific Vaccine Access Facility (APVAX).
“To supplement the $25-million financing, ADB is preparing a follow-on project under APVAX for consideration by ADB’s Board of Directors to support the government’s efforts to procure vaccines,” it said.
The government is currently negotiating with various pharmaceutical companies to secure safe, effective, and cost-efficient Covid-19 vaccines as part of its national vaccine roadmap.
ADB, in coordination with the Department of Finance (DoF), provides the government with technical advisory assistance in the implementation of the vaccine roadmap.
“The government’s vaccine supply contracts with ADB financing, including direct payments by ADB to vaccine manufacturers, will follow ADB’s procurement rules and guidelines, and ADB’s anti-corruption and integrity policy,” it said.
It added that financing will also follow global best practices on safeguards measures, including waste management of medical supplies. SOVEREIGNPH