Case vs. officials linked to Dengvaxia controversy may be upgraded to murder – PAO
by Marje Pelayo | Posted on Tuesday, November 6th, 2018
MANILA, Philippines — The Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) plans to upgrade their case filed before the Department of Justice (DOJ) against former Health Secretary Janet Garin and other officials linked to the controversial Dengvaxia vaccine procurement.
PAO Chief Persida Rueda Acosta has given PAO lawyers one week to study the possibility of upgrading it from homicide to murder and the determination of who among the 39 respondents may face the said charges.
“Kung alam nila na nakamamatay ang Dengvaxia, hindi lang kapabayaan ito. Ito po ay isang murder… Guinea pigs ang ginawa nila sa mga bata. Experimental vaccine pa ito up to November 2017. Clinical phase 3 phase 4 pa nga ngayon iyan. Imagine ngayon lang sila nagpapa approve sa Europa,” Acosta argued.
After failing to attend the previous hearing, Garin submitted her counter-affidavit on the 2nd batch of Dengvaxia complaints on Monday.
Meanwhile, international representatives from Sanofi and Zuellig Pharma were directed to submit their respective counter-affidavits on November 15.
The complainants were also ordered to submit their reply on Garin’s counter-affidavit on the same date. – Mai Bermudez
by Robie de Guzman | Posted on Wednesday, July 3rd, 2019
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Health (DOH) onWednesday relaunched its school-based immunization program in a bid to have some 9 million children catch up on missed vaccinations this year.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said the program aims to immunize students from kindergarten to Grade 7 with the measles and rubella vaccines. Students will also be given booster doses of tetanus-diptheria vaccines.
Duque led the vaccination of some children in Signal Village National High School in Taguig City on Wednesday morning (July 3).
The DOH chief said all students will undergo a quick health assessment and review of their vaccination status, stressing that only students with parental consent will be immunized.
In a speech, Duque called on parents to have their children vaccinated to protect them against diseases. He also cited the low response rate on the government’s immunization program due to reduced public trust following the dengvaxia controversy.
Although public response and trust in national immunization program has been notably increasing in Metro Manila in the past few months, Duque admitted, much is still needed to be done.
“Mababa pa rin, so iyan po mababa pa rin. That’s why we still need to aggressively pursue our National Immunization Program,” he said.
The DOH’s relaunching of its school-based immunization program comes after the declaration of a measles outbreak in February 2019. The outbreak status has yet to be lifted since its declaration in Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Western Visayas and Central Visayas.
According to Duque, they are targeting to reach 95% vaccination coverage this year to prevent repeated declaration of disease outbreaks due to the proliferation of false information.
“May iba umiiyak dahil namatay isa, dalawang anak dahil lang sa ayaw magpabakuna dahil nga bunsod ng maling impormasyon na kumakalat sa mga komunidad at minsan hindi naman talaga naippliwanag ng sapat.. ang nagiging resulta ay ang kaaawa-awang bata na nagkakaroon ng komplikasyon gaya ng measles,” he added.
The health official further emphasized the importance of availing free immunization in relation to the implementation of the Universal Health Care Law.
Duque said the school-based immunization program for this year will run until September. (with details from Aiko Miguel)
The Food and Drug Administration has permanently revoked anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia’s certificates of product registration (CPR) due to the continued failure of manufacturer, Sanofi Pasteur Inc. to submit post-approval commitment documents.
FDA Director General Nela Charade Puno on Tuesday cited in a statement the French pharmaceutical firm’s disregard of the agency’s rules and regulations as reason for its CPRs’ cancellation.
“Its brazen defiance of FDA’s directives and its continued failure to comply leaves us no other recourse but to impose the maximum penalty of revocation of the CPRs covering the Dengvaxia products,” Puno said.
The revocation of the Dengvaxia’s CPR makes its importation, sale and distribution illegal in the Philippines, according to the FDA.
Dengvaxia’s CPR was initially suspended for a year since December 29, 2017 after Sanofi’s failure to comply with post-marketing requirements.
Prior to the lapse of the one-year suspension on December 17, 2018, Sanofi failed to comply with post-marketing authorization requirements. The company has since then suspended the sale and marketing of the vaccine. — Robie de Guzman
by Marje Pelayo | Posted on Wednesday, February 6th, 2019
QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The House Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability on Wednesday (February 6) recommended the filing of graft charges, technical malversation and grave misconduct against former president Benigno Aquino III for allowing the use of Dengvaxia in government immunization programs that allegedly caused the death of several children.
Also implicated were former Budget Secretary Florencio ‘Butch’ Abad and former health Secretary Janette Garin.
Based on the approved committee report, the three were among other government officials who conspired to procure the controversial anti-dengue vaccine despite lack of certificate of product registration and safety assurance from authorizing bodies.
House committee chair Rep. Xavier Romualdez argued that Aquino violated the law when he allowed the use of P3.5 billion in public funds to procure Dengvaxia vaccines in 2015.
Meanwhile, Dinagat Island Rep. Kaka Bag-Ao questioned the committee’s recommendation arguing that the House inquiry has not established proof that the said officials’ actions indeed violated the law.
But Romualdez stood by the House committee’s report.
Several congressmen proposed charges against the executives of Dengvaxia manufacturer Sanofi Pasteur as well as former health Secretary Paulyn Ubial.
The UNTV News Team has sought the statement of those involved such as Aquino, Garin and Abad but to no avail.
The Department of Justice (DOJ), meanwhile, is now probing the complaints filed by the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) in relation to the deaths of 30 children being linked to the Dengvaxia immunization. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Grace Casin)
UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.