DOH sus­pends dengue vac­ci­na­tion, urges pub­lic not to panic

Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro - - News Plus -

UP­DATED - The Depart­ment of Health (DOH) on Fri­day, De­cem­ber 1, sus­pended its P3-bil­lion dengue vac­ci­na­tion pro­gram in light of new anal­y­sis that the vac­cine, Deng­vaxia, poses greater risk of se­vere dengue fever to those who have not been pre­vi­ously in­fected with the virus.

In a press con­fer­ence, Health Sec­re­tary Fran­cisco Duque asked the pub­lic not to panic, say­ing they were in­ten­si­fy­ing mon­i­tor­ing and sur­veil­lance of the chil­dren, aged 9 and above, who have re­ceived the vac­cine.

“Yung se­vere dis­ease, ay hindi na­man man­gan­gahu­lu­gan (na) la­hat mangya­yari yan. Ngu­nit aan­tayin pa rin natin ang pinakahul­ing ulat o up­date mula sa Sanofi at WHO (Not ev­ery­body will get in­fected with se­vere dengue. But we shall wait for the fi­nal up­date from Sanofi and WHO),” Duque said.

Deng­vaxia, also re­ferred to as CYD-TDV, is the first li­censed dengue vac­cine that was de­vel­oped by Sanofi Pas­teur.

A to­tal of 733,713 chil­dren from Cen­tral Lu­zon, Cal­abar­zon and Na­tional Cap­i­tal Re­gion re­ceived Deng­vaxia as of Novem­ber 2017. Duque said they still have to de­ter­mine how many of the to­tal have not been ex­posed to the virus prior to vac­ci­na­tion.

Duque also said they were co­or­di­nat­ing with the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion (WHO), which is re­view­ing the ef­fi­cacy and safety of Deng­vaxia through the Global Ad­vi­sory

Com­mit­tee on Vac­cine Safety and the Strate­gic Ad­vi­sory Group of Ex­perts (SAGE) on im­mu­niza­tion.

He said SAGE is sched­uled to meet on De­cem­ber 12 or 13.

Deng­vaxia is given to per­sons aged 9 to 45 as a three-dose se­ries on a 0/6/12 month sched­ule.

In the Philip­pines, Duque said the first dose was ad­min­is­tered to the chil­dren of the three pi­lot re­gions in April 2016. The sec­ond dose was given in Oc­to­ber 2016 and the third dose was to have been given in Oc­to­ber 2017.

The vac­cine has also been in­tro­duced in Brazil. To­gether with the Philip­pines, the tar­get was to ad­min­is­ter it to about one mil­lion in­di­vid­u­als.

In an ad­vi­sory re­leased on Thurs­day, Novem­ber 30, WHO rec­om­mended that Deng­vaxia be ad­min­is­tered only to seroneg­a­tive sub­jects, or those who are known to have been in­fected with dengue pend­ing the full re­view of its safety.

The or­ga­ni­za­tion said re­cent anal­y­sis con­ducted by Sanofi Pas­teur showed that seroneg­a­tive sub­jects, or per­sons who had not been ex­posed to the dengue virus, “had a higher risk of more se­vere dengue and hos­pi­tal­iza­tions due to dengue com­pared to un­vac­ci­nated par­tic­i­pants, re­gard­less of age.”

“This in­creased risk was ob­served af­ter an ini­tial pro­tec­tive pe­riod and per­sisted over the ob­ser­va­tion pe­riod of up to 66 months post pri­mary vac­ci­na­tion,” the WHO said.

On the other hand, the vac­cine sig­nif­i­cantly pro­tects from se­vere dengue those who have been in­fected with dengue prior to im­mu­niza­tion

In a meet­ing Fri­day morn­ing with the DOH ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee, Duque said they were in­formed that Deng­vaxia pro­vides a 30-month pro­tec­tive pe­riod af­ter the first dose to both seroneg­a­tive and seropos­i­tive sub­jects.

Duque said he has di­rected the depart­ment's le­gal ser­vices group to re­view the con­tracts on the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the dengue vac­ci­na­tion pro­gram.

He said DOH will pro­vide reg­u­lar up­dates through its re­gional of­fices, which will co­or­di­nate with the health providers, ru­ral health units and gov­ern­ment and pri­vate hos­pi­tals

Health Sec­re­tary Fran­cisco Duque said on Fri­day, De­cem­ber 1, that the agency sus­pended its P3­bil­lion dengue vac­ci­na­tion pro­gram in light of new anal­y­sis that the vac­cine, Deng­vaxia, is harm­ful to those who have not been pre­vi­ously in­fected with the virus. (Photo grabbed from DOH Face­book page)

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