Medical

No reported deaths due to dengue vaccine: Sanofi

No reported deaths due to dengue vaccine: Sanofi

Roque said the Palace understands the concern of the people, especially the parents and relatives of the children who received the vaccine.

The public immunisation programme was suspended on Friday.

Sanofi Philippines said it would issue a statement on Monday.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said those behind the botched dengue immunization program will be held responsible and that the Department of Health is now closely monitoring those who have received the Dengvaxia vaccine.

"Our present health officials are serious in carrying out their mandate to always guard the health and physical well-being of our people, which includes intensifying surveillance and evaluation of our dengue vaccination program", Roque said.

The WHO, in an advisory on November 30, recommended that Dengvaxia be given only to seropositive individuals, or those who have been infected with the dengue virus.

Roque, the Philippines spokesman, said there had been no reported case of "severe dengue infection" since the vaccine was administered and called on the public "not to spread information that may cause undue alarm". Dr. Nevio Zagaria, WHO country representative in Yemen, told Reuters that 16 percent of Yemeni children under the age of five suffer from acute malnutrition, including 5.2 percent with a severe form that is life-threatening, and the problem is increasing.

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The Department of Health in cooperation with the World Health Organization kicks off the series of immunization of 1 Million children against dengue virus.

Within the Philippines, there are 200,000 cases of new infections of dengue fever reported each year.

"Severe dengue" as used by Sanofi means fever for two days, a drop in platelet count, hematoma, among other symptoms.

The analysis confirmed Dengvaxia provides persistent protective benefit in those who had prior infection, Sanofi said.

Those who had been vaccinated "are being followed up for adverse effects", he said.

In 2016, the DOH launched the dengue vaccination initiative in Regions III, IV-A and National Capital Region-the three highly endemic regions.

Hundreds of thousands of children in the Philippines have been given a dengue vaccine which may worsen the outbreak, officials warned, as they halted the program late last week.