The government will be needing at least Php90 billion to buy COVID-19 vaccines next year.
Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez made the statement during his meeting with Senate President Tito Sotto and Ping Lacson.
“Tito and I had a good meeting with 3 czars last night to discuss red tape issues and the funding needs surrounding the country’s fight against Covid. With a proper budget and lots of help from the business sector and LGU’s, herd immunity may yet still be achieved. Cooperation is key,” Lacson said in a tweet.
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Lacson said that Dizon, Galvez, and Magalong said during the meeting the need for the inclusion of a P90-billion vaccine procurement fund in the 2022 budget.
“They will need P90 billion for next year’s vaccine procurement budget to be included in the Regular Budget of DOH to be itemized for vaccines, instead of putting it under the Unprogrammed Fund in order to ensure its availability,” he told the Inquirer.
The czars also told the senators that P20 billion is also needed this year under the proposed Bayanihan 3 for the purchase of vaccines.
“That’s their request but I told them to check with DBM first if the amount could be sourced from realignments from other executive agencies with still unused appropriations before we consider to include it in the Bayanihan 3,” he said.
“I suggested to try first to be realigned from the unused appropriations of several executive agencies as it is allowed under the Constitution as well as the extended effectivity of the Bayanihan law already passed,” Lacson said. (TDT)