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PH Joins Clinical Trials for COVID-19 Vaccine

The Philippines is expected to join clinical trials of potential vaccines against the novel coronavirus, Malacañang said Sunday, May 24.

Friday, May 22, IATF on Emerging Infectious Diseases approved recommendations from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) to let the country participate in clinical trials for COVID-19 vaccines being developed by the following groups:

The IATF’s approval is contained in its Resolution No. 39, released to the public on Saturday, May 30.

The task force authorized these 4 groups to be provided the following:

In a statement said by Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque, “President Rodrigo Duterte has expressed optimism over news that clinical trials for the development of COVID-19 vaccines. We expect involvement in the vaccine clinical trials by the last quarter of 2020 with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) taking a lead role,”

“The president wants to save the life of each and every Filipino, and, thus, places great interest in these clinical trials,” he added.

Under Resolution No. 39, collaborating organizations will be provided with the WHO requirements for coronavirus vaccine target product profiles, pre-qualification process for WHO approvals, and FDA updated guidelines on clinical trials.

Once the trials are completed, they will form part of the requirements for the vaccine registration process by the FDA for the issuance of a certificate of product registration for market release in the Philippines.

The DOST would lead a new technical working subgroup that would coordinate with the FDA, Department of Health (DOH), Research Institute for Tropical Medicine, and the WHO on matters related to the clinical trials.

The Philippines earlier signed on to participate in clinical trials of the Japanese anti-flu drug Avigan as a possible cure for COVID-19.

Unless a vaccine or cure for COVID-19 is developed and made available to the global population, experts believe a return to normal life would be largely impossible.