Philippines Warns of Unapproved Covid Shots as Soldiers Get Jabs

The Philippines’ Food and Drug Administration warned against the use of unauthorized vaccines as the military said members of President Rodrigo Duterte’s security detail have already been inoculated.

Philippine regulators have not approved any Covid-19 vaccine for use in the country, FDA director general Eric Domingo said in an interview with CNN Philippines on Monday. Importing, administering or distributing vaccines without approval is illegal, Domingo said, and cautioned that unauthorized shots may be counterfeits, spoiled or causing side effects.

Soldiers in Duterte’s security team have already been vaccinated, the Armed Forces of the Philippines said in a statement on Monday. The move is “a bold step” to protect the president, it said, without specifying what vaccines were used and how they were obtained.

Duterte also said over the weekend that many Filipinos, including soldiers, have already received the vaccine from Sinopharm Group Co.

The government is still in talks with vaccine makers, as it aims to inoculate about a fourth of the population next year. It is expecting the first shipment of about 30 million doses by May 2021, including 2.6 million doses purchased by private businesses from AstraZeneca Plc.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

BQ Install

Bloomberg Quint

Add BloombergQuint App to Home screen.