Press Release | 26 March 2021
The Department of Health (DOH) and the National Task Force Against COVID-19 (NTF) on Friday shared the preliminary findings of the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF investigation reporting that the 7,500 AstraZeneca doses recalled from the DOH Center for Health Development (CHD) Bicol remain in usable condition.
Based on the preliminary report of the WHO and UNICEF, one of the storage boxes containing the 7,500 doses received by CHD - Bicol logged a temperature of more than 400 degrees celsius (°C). However, upon detailed review of the available evidence, WHO and UNICEF found that only the thermometer was faulty, and all other equipment and devices used to store and transport the said vaccines were all functional, thereby ensuring that all vaccine doses remain usable.
The DOH and the NTF express gratitude to DOH - CHD Bicol for following protocol and exhibiting an abundance of caution, which in turn allowed the National Government, WHO, and UNICEF to immediately initiate an investigation.
The DOH and NTF likewise express gratitude to WHO and UNICEF for providing immediate assistance and conducting a thorough investigation on the incident. Following this, the DOH and NTF will double down on ensuring and maintaining the functionality of all devices and equipment used in COVID-19 vaccine logistics and storage management.