FDA approves emergency use of Moderna, Pfizer bivalent vaccines

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 28) — The Department of Health (DOH) confirmed that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted emergency use authorization for bivalent vaccines of Moderna and Pfizer.

DOH officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said the health agency will release recommendations and guidelines for the priority population in the coming days.

According to the DOH, bivalent vaccines are designed to address the original COVID-19 strain and the Omicron variant and its subvariants.

"We are pursuing the procurement of these bivalent vaccines because articles and evidence have shown that it guarantees additional protection," Vergeire said in a press briefing on Wednesday.

The DOH earlier projected the procurement of bivalent vaccines by the first quarter of 2023.

BF.7 subvariant

During the press briefing, Vergeire also said evidence showed that the BF.7 subvariant is more transmissible and immune-evasive compared to other Omicron subvariants.

READ: Four cases of Omicron subvariant BF.7 detected in the country - DOH

But she emphasized that the public should not fear the emergence of subvariants - especially since we are now "living with the virus."

"The virus is here to stay. Expectedly this virus will mutate. It is not supposed to be a concern. It's supposed to be something that we be cautious on, something that we become more vigilant," Vergeire said.

Compared to the current situation in China, the health official assured Filipinos that it will not be repeated in the country.

READ: Beijing in photos: A look at China's zero COVID-19 policy as cases soar anew

"The practice and behavior of people here, precaution is always there," she added. "Nakikita natin na maingat ang ating mga kababayan. Dahil doon, hindi masyadong tumataas ang kaso."

[Translation: We see that our countrymen are careful and because of that, the cases do not go up too much.]