Days after producer Sanofi Pasteur disclosed that dengue-injection Dengvaxia is quite unsafe for children, World Health Organization (WHO) Representative Office Philippines release a statement clearing their alleged recommendation for using Dengvaxia in national immunization projects of the government.
Their official statement released by the Country Office said, “The WHO position paper did not include a recommendation to countries to introduce the dengue vaccine into their national immunization programs.”
The letter continued, “Rather, WHO outlined a series of considerations national governments should take into account in deciding whether to introduce the vaccine, based on a review of available data at the time, along with possible risks.”
This statement refuted the allegations that the Office endorsed Dengvaxia to be use during the mid-2016 national immunization drive by the government.
“These included the following: first, use of the vaccine should only be considered in areas where a high proportion (preferably at least 70%) of the community had already been exposed to the virus; second, the vaccine should only be provided to people 9 years of age and above; and third, people being vaccinated should receive 3 doses,” the statement explained.
It went on, “these conditions appeared to be met in the 3 regions of the Philippines in which the dengue vaccination effort was already ongoing at that time – noting that the decision to roll out the vaccine had been taken by the DOH before WHO’s advice became available.”
However, because of recent improvement on the issue, the WHO is waiting for “expert analysis of new data and advice” on the use of Dengvaxia.
It said in its statement, “WHO looks forward to the advice of its Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization which will meet to review the new evidence next week.”
Currently, all dengue immunization program hosted by the government have been suspended following the announcement of Sanofi that the vaccine can pose threats to individuals injected who doesn’t experienced dengue prior to injection.
According to an ABS-CBN News Report, the “Department of Health procured P3 billion worth of Dengvaxia intended for one million public school children in areas reported to have the highest incidence of dengue in the same year.”
Data shows that as of November 2017, about 733,713 Filipino children have been given Dengvaxia.
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