DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The Department of Health here is currently monitoring at least 132 ​persons ​vaccinated with the controversial dengue vaccine called Dengvaxia.

Doctor Abdullah B. Dumama, Jr., regional director of DOH 11 told reporters on Friday, January 12, that the figure was based on the accumulated list given by private health sector all over Davao region who have vaccinated their clients with the said vaccine.

Dumama said the list does not only include children but ​also adults aged 45 years old.

“The 132 includes both those who have prior dengue and those who have not,” Dumama said.

He emphasized that all of those vaccinated are strictly being monitored by the department and private physicians who vaccinated them.

“We requested the private doctors to report to us because they are the ones who are coordinating with the clients,” Dumama said.

To date, Dumama noted that the department did not receive any complaint from those who were given with Dengvaxia.

He also urged those who have been vaccinated to go to the region’s Dengvaxia health desk so that they will be included in the monitoring.

“If there will be a case somehow connected to Dengvaxia vaccination, we will assist them on the hospitalization. It should be in a government hospital. If it’s in a private hospital we will just do augmentation on top of it,” Dumama said.

Dengvaxia controversy

The use of Dengvaxia, a vaccine developed by a multinational pharmaceutical company Sanofi Pasteur, forms part of the massive anti-dengue program during former President Benigno Aquino III term, which started in April 2016.

The health program was launched in regions with highest prevalence rate of dengue cases namely Region 3 (Central Luzon), 4-A (CALABARZON), National Capital Region (NCR) and Region 7 (Central Visayas).

But in November 29, 2017, Sanofi Pasteur announced that the results of new clinical data analysis found that Dengvaxia is more risky for people not previously infected by the virus. Thus over 700,000 Filipino school children immunized with Dengvaxia are at risk.

​”​Despite the fact that Davao region was not included in the program​​,​”​ ​the ​DOH 11 said private institutions and physicians might have vaccinated their clients with the said vaccine.

“The secretary has already organized a very strong Dengvaxia task force it consisted of USECs (undersecretaries), ASECs (assistant secretaries), directors and program managers that are directly related to dengue prevention and control,” Dumama said.

Apart from monitoring those who were injected with Dengvaxia, the task force also consists of a legal team to look into the accountability of the international pharmaceutical company Sanofi Pasteur. (davaotoday.com)

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