DOH looks ahead to next-generation COVID vaccines

The Department of Health (DOH) on Tuesday said that the Philippines is going to explore the possibility of procuring next-generation Covid-19 vaccines that specifically targets Omicron.

“Based on how they formulated this (vaccine) is specific for Omicron. Lalabas maybe 4th quarter of this year,” DOH Officer-in-Charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said as she specifically mentioned Moderna’s bivalent Covid vaccine.

However, she said the vaccine should undergo standard process for review by the country’s Food and Drug Administration, Vaccine Expert Panel, and Health Technology Assessment Council.

BA.5

Meanwhile, Vergeire reported that more Omicron subvariants were detected based on the latest sequencing run from August 7 to 8.

Vergeire reported that 906 additional BA.5 cases were detected,814 tagged as recovered.

Of these, 682 individuals fully vaccinated, 14 cases are partially vaccinated while the vaccination status of the remaining 210 are still being verified.

At least 10 individuals from all regions except for Regions 10, 11, 12, CARAGA, and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) tested positive for the BA.5 variant.

” At the moment, the exposure of individuals, travel histories, and health status are being verified, 49 are still undergoing isolation, while the outcome of the 43 are being verified,” Vergeire said.

BA.4

Eleven additional BA.4 cases detected, all 11 tagged as recovered.

Five individuals from Region 5, and 2 each from Region 6, CAR, and NCR tested positive for the BA.4 variant.

“Nine individuals are fully vaccinated while the vaccination status of the remaining of the two individuals are still being verified. At the moment, the exposure of individuals, travel histories, and health status are being verified,” Vergeire said.

BA.2.12.1

Seven additional BA.2.12.1 Cases detected, all 7 tagged as recovered.

Four individuals from Region 1, and 1 each from Regions 2, 4A and 6 tested positive for the BA.2.12.1 variant.

Six individuals are fully vaccinated while the vaccination status of the remaining case is still being verified.

At the moment, the exposure of individuals, travel histories, and health status are being verified.