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Ex-DOH official: use of Dengvaxia not allowed in Europe

A health worker collects unused packs of anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia as she returns it inside a freezer for storage at the Manila Health Department in Sta Cruz, metro Manila, Philippines December 5, 2017. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

The anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia is not recognized in Europe.

According to former Health Undersecretary Dr. Susan Pineda-Mercado, the use of Dengavaxia is currently not allowed in Europe since the effects of the vaccine are still being investigated.

Mercado further added that this increases the question why the Philippines took a risk and used the controversial product of the French pharmaceutical company Sanofi Pasteur for mass vaccination.

“Ang Europe ay pinagbawal ang gamit ng Dengvaxia. Hindi nila ginagamit sa Europe iyan, pinag-uusapan pa lang.” Mercado told DZRH during an interview. “Dalawa lang bansa ang gumamit ng pera ng bayan para sa Dengvaxia. Sa ibang lugar meron lisensya iyan para ibigay sa pribadong sector.”

Meanwhile, the former Department of Health official advised parents to bring their children, who received the Dengvaxia vaccine, to the hospital if they start showing symptoms of the virus.

Mercado insisted that said symptoms should not be ignored if the child was administered with the controversial anti-dengue vaccine.

Mercado said that, while it is not sure if the child was infected with dengue, it is better if they were examined for the said virus.

“Kung sila ay kakaiba ang kanilang nararamdaman, so lagnat na hindi bumababa, walang ganang kumain, hindi nakikipaglaro, at nakahiga parang mahina ang katawan. Huwag niyong patagalin iyan, pumunta na kayo sa ospital.” Mercado also said.

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