MANILA, July 10 (Mabuhay) — The Department of Foreign Affairs on Friday said the Philippine government has started coordinating with various international partners to ensure availability of potential vaccine against the deadly coronavirus for Filipinos.

“Based on the gathered information by the department, collaboration with Philippine subsidiaries of vaccine developers, engagement with those overseas for conduct of clinical trials, utilization of multilateral efforts to ensure vaccine access, and bilateral cooperation are key efforts that must be pursued to ensure that a viable vaccine can be made available and accessible for Filipinos,” the DFA said in a statement.

The DFA, through its Foreign Service posts, has initiated coordination and exchanges of information with different jurisdictions across the Americas, Asia and the Pacific, Europe, Africa and Middle East on COVID-19 vaccine developments.

Information on vaccine developments and potential international partners were endorsed to the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) as the chair of the Sub-Technical Working Group on COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Trials, the DFA said.

“The DFA stands ready to support and complement efforts of Philippine government agencies in response to the current pandemic and eventually secure a viable vaccine for COVID-19 for Filipinos in the soonest possible time,” the department said.

The Philippines has one of the highest number of cases and deaths in Southeast Asia, with over 51,000 reported infections and 1,314 deaths amid government-imposed quarantines and lockdowns. (MNS)

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