Experts approve Sputnik V-AstraZeneca vaccine mix amid delays – official

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 12) — Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr on Thursday said those who received Sputnik V as their first dose can be inoculated with AstraZeneca for their second shot, but only under certain circumstances.

The delivery of the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccines made by Russian manufacturer Gamaleya has encountered several delays due to supply and logistical issues.

Galvez said the shipment of 15,000 doses for second component is set to arrive on Friday. If it faces another setback, there is a back-up plan for those already scheduled to receive their second dose.

The vaccine czar said experts in the country have approved the use of AstraZeneca as the second dose if the shipment is delayed and if the Food and Drug Administration has not yet approved the emergency use authorization for Sputnik Light, the single-dose version of Sputnik V.

"If the 42 days lapses already, it has been approved by the Vaccine Experts Panel and EXECOM (executive committee) of DOH, AstraZeneca can be given as second dose after 42 days," he said in an event.

Under the FDA guidelines, the two required doses of Sputnik V must be given within 42 days. Sputnik V and AstraZeneca are both adenoviral vector vaccines.

Meanwhile, the FDA on Monday said it is still reviewing the application for Sputnik Light. Once approved, it will be the second single-dose COVID-19 vaccine approved in the country after Johnson & Johnson's Janssen vaccine.

Galvez said one shot of Sputnik V is similar to the protection offered by Sputnik Light, which showed 79.4% efficacy.

The Philippines has not yet authorized mixing different vaccine brands despite the unstable supply in the country.