DOH, NTF Release Operational Guidelines for the Donation of Privately-procured Vaccines
In Multilateral Agreements between the Private Sector and vaccine manufacturer AstraZeneca in November 2020 and January 2021, the Private Sector committed to donating 50% of the procured doses to the national government. Furthermore, based on the DOH guidelines, there is a surplus of vaccines in the Private Sector due to the early access of its employees or intended recipients to COVID-19 vaccines from the national government. Thus, in order to ensure that all vaccines received in the country are fully utilized, the Department of Health (DOH) and the National Task Force Against COVID-19 (NTF) issued JMC 2021-002 or the “Operational Guidelines for the Donation and Subsequent Reallocation of Privately-procured COVID-19 Vaccine Doses to the National Government, Local Government Units (LGUs) and other Private Sector Entities.” This will govern how the Private Sector will facilitate the donation and/or reallocation of doses received both under the existing MLAs and the excess or surplus doses.
The criteria for the acceptance of COVID-19 Vaccine Donations shall be in accordance with relevant provisions of the DOH AO 2020-0001 or the “Guidelines in the Importation, Facilitation, and Management of Foreign Donations involving Health and Health-Related Product.” Specifically, the COVID-19 vaccines to be donated:
- shall be of good quality;
- shall be in good condition, not adulterated, nor misbranded;
- shall have an expiration date not less than four (4) months from the expected time of arrival in the country. (However, special approval may be given for COVID – 19 vaccines with less than four (4) months expiry, subject to technical evaluation).
- shall be properly labeled in original packaging.
Following DOH-NTF JMC No. 2021 – 0001 or the “Procedures on the Procurement and Distribution of COVID-19 Vaccines for Private Entities,” the donation, reallocation, storage, transport, deployment, and administration of COVID-19 vaccines through the COVID-19 Vaccination Program by the private entities shall be exempt from customs duties, value-added tax, excise tax, donor’s tax, and other fees. However, such vaccines shall not be intended for resale or other commercial use and shall be distributed without consideration from persons to be vaccinated.
For the donation of 50% of the procured AstraZeneca vaccines under the MLAs, the Private Sector must execute a Deed of Donation in favor of the national government and a corresponding and separate Deed of Acceptance shall be executed by the latter, signed by the NTF and the DOH.
For the donation of the excess or surplus COVID-19 doses, the Private Sector may choose a specific LGU as the recipient. In case the Private Sector entity has not identified an LGU, the DOH may provide it with a list of LGUs considered as priority recipients under its existing prioritization guidelines. The DOH may identify the LGU recipient based on load of cases, inventory of existing COVID-19 vaccines, capacity for cold chain storage of to-be-donated vaccines, the national government’s commitment to equitable and safe access to vaccines, and LGU requests. In case the entity opted not to choose any of the LGUs from the list provided by the DOH, it can directly donate its excess or surplus COVID-19 vaccines to the national government. The entity may likewise choose to donate its excess or surplus COVID-19 vaccines to another Private Sector entity either through pure donation or conditional donation with reimbursement at cost.
After turn-over, the national government, LGU, or Private Sector entity recipient shall submit to the National Covid-19 Vaccination Operations Center (NVOC) a Post-Donation Report. The NVOC shall record the transfers of ownership in its database for monitoring and vaccine allocation purposes.
For more information, read the guidelines here.