PAO forensic team conducts autopsy on alleged Dengvaxia victim

admin   •   February 22, 2018   •   5076

The forensic team of the Public Attorney’s Office conducting an autopsy to the body of child in Minalin, Pampanga.

MANILA, Philippines — Mary Jane Aguhayon of Minalin, Pampanga is worried because one of her children was vaccinated with Dengvaxia under the government’s immunization program.

She got even more worried after 12-year-old Roshaine Cariño got sick and eventually died due allegedly to the anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia.

“Nababahala po kami, kami mag-asawa lalo na yung asawa ko may nerbiyos siya, bale yun pong gabi naiisip niya yung katulad niyan nabalitaan na naman namin may namatay,” said Mary Jane Aguhayon, a local resident of Minalin, Pampanga.

(We are worried especially, my husband. He’s nervous. Every night, he thinks of the possibility that our child will suffer the same fate.)

Mary Jane is worried every time somebody reportedly dies allegedly due to Dengvaxia.

Earlier this morning, personnel of the Public’s Attorney’s Office (PAO) led by Atty. Persida Acosta arrived in Minalin.

The Cariño family asked PAO to conduct an autopsy on the remains of Roshaine.

According to Roshaine’s father, they sought the help of PAO to determine the real cause of her death last February 19.

“Kung halimbawa galing man sa gamot na yun tapos namatay ang anak ko sa ganyang gamot, maipaglalaban ko yung anak ko. Kung hindi dahil sa gamot na yun, di buhay pa ang anak ko kasama ko pa siya,” said Romeo Cariño, father of Roshaine.

(If Dengvaxia really was the cause of my daughter’s demise, I will be able to seek justice for her death. If not for that vaccine my child would still be alive.)

On September 17,  Roshaine experienced blurry vision, headache, and severe fever.

Her parents immediately rushed her to the Jose B. Lingad Memorial Regional Hospital in San Fernando, Pampanga where she ended up in a coma.

The result of the MRI scan conducted on her showed a tumor in her head.

Roshaine was bedridden and could not move her body.

Last Monday afternoon this week, the teenager died.

According to PAO forensic expert Dr. Erwin Erfe, Roshaine showed symptoms of severe dengue that are believed to be the side effect of Dengvaxia.

“Maraming significant findings sa brain niya nung tiningnan namin ang ibabaw, mukhang maga na yung brain. Yung mga blood vessels ay dilated at may extra vassation of blood. Kumalat ang blood sa utak,” said the forensic expert.

(There were a lot of significant findings on her brain. When we looked at the surface, her brain was already swelling. The blood vessels were dilated and there was an extra vassation of blood. The blood spread to her brain.)

According to PAO chief Atty. Persida Acosta, Roshaine was the 23rd child they examined that died due to severe dengue.

“Ito pare-pareho ng signs and symptoms. Pareho ng ang nangyari sa buhay nila and then yun nga namatay ganoon pa rin nangyari sa mga organs (They had the same signs and symptoms. They suffered the same fate in life, and even in death, their organs also endured same abuse),” said the PAO chief.

Roshaine was buried earlier at the Sto. Domingo Minalin public cemetery. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News and Rescue




DOH agrees with FDA decision to ban Dengvaxia in Phl

Maris Federez   •   August 22, 2019

A Filipino nurse prepares to administer an anti-dengue vaccine during a nationwide vaccination at a school in the flood-prone city of Marikina, east of Manila, Philippines, 04 April 2016. (Photoville International / FILE)

The Department of Health (DOH) has rejected the request of Sanofi Pasteur to overturn the decision of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ban the use of Dengvaxia vaccine in the Philippines.

With this, the DOH approved the ruling of the FDA to permanently revoke the certificate of product registration of Dengvaxia for Sanofi’s failure to submit the necessary post-approval requirements.

“The decision concerns Sanofi’s complete disregard of FDA regulations, which were precisely put in place by law to ensure safety,” DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said in a statement.

Although Sanofi was able to submit the first two versions of its risk management plans (RMP), the pharmaceutical company failed to submit the third and final version of the plan.

The DOH said, however, that Sanofi may apply for a new certificate of product registration (CPR) for Dengvaxia but this must be in accordance with the FDA regulations.

“Given that Dengvaxia is an innovative drug, the importance of complying with these post-marketing commitments is critical to public safety,” the statement added.

Meanwhile, the department has assured that it continues to address the increasing cases of dengue in the country. /mbmf

Ombudsman probes PAO’s Acosta, Erfe for alleged corruption

Robie de Guzman   •   August 16, 2019

Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) chief Persida Acosta

MANILA, Philippines – The Office of the Ombudsman on Friday confirmed it is investigating Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) chief Persida Acosta and Forensic Laboratory chief Dr. Erwin Erfe for alleged graft and corruption.

In a statement, the Ombudsman said it is currently conducting preliminary and administrative adjudication against Acosta and Erfe on corruption allegations within PAO including the controversial Dengvaxia vaccine issue.

The case stemmed from the complaints filed early this year by lawyer Wilfredo Garrido Jr. who sought for the suspension of Acosta and Erfe for allegedly committing corruption, falsification, malversation and illegal use of public funds or property.

The two PAO officials supposedly made money in alleged illegal purchases of office supplies for their crusade against Dengvaxia in 2018.

Acosta was also accused of using PAO budget to hold seminars at luxury hotels as she supposedly receives a commission for every gathering.

The Ombudsman said that after Garrido’s complaints were evaluated and docketed in April 2019, an order was immediately issued, directing the respondents to file their respective counter-affidavits.

“Records from the criminal and administrative cases show that respondents are facing criminal charges for violation of Sections 3(e) and 3(j) of Republic Act No. 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices), Falsification by Public Officer, Malversation and Illegal Use of Public Funds or Property,” the statement read.

Administrative charges for Grave Misconduct, Serious Dishonesty, Grave Abuse of Authority and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service, were also leveled against Acosta and Erfe,” it added.

Acosta and Erfe have denied the allegations in a consolidated counter-affidavit they filed last April 30.

The Office of the Ombudsman said several other pleadings were filed by the respective parties during the course of the investigation, including the one signed by alleged “DOJ PAO lawyers.”

The Ombudsman said that as of August, the parties were directed to file their respective verified position papers containing their positions, supporting evidence and defenses.

“The corruption allegations against the high-ranking PAO officials will be judiciously scrutinized and the cases shall be resolved solely on the basis of the evidence presented by the parties,” Ombudsman Samuel Martires said.

Malacañang earlier said it will not interfere with the case.

Sanofi Pasteur optimistic Dengvaxia will be restored in PH market

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 15, 2019

French Pharmaceutical firm, Sanofi Pasteur expressed optimism that the Dengvaxia vaccine will be restored in the Philippine market.

In a statement, Sanofi Pasteur Philippines General Manager Jean Antoine Zinsou said they are open for a discussion with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Department of Health (DOH).

He also clarified that Dengvaxia is safe and effective to use.

According to Zinsou, the said vaccine was only banned in the Philippines because of incomplete documents or due to “administrative consideration.”

“We definitely need to settle this issue. One way to do it is to discuss with FDA and see what is needed to have this revocation lifted,” he said.

Zinsou also said Dengvaxia is registered in 20 countries across the globe and is acknowledged by the United States Food Drug Administration and the World Health Organization (WHO).

Meanwhile, Sanofi agrees with the DOH that Dengvaxia is not a solution to the Dengue epidemic in the country.

READ: Dengvaxia won’t bring dengue cases down – DOH

“The vaccines that we are mentioning is not a solution or a silver bullet for the ongoing outbreak. We are open to any discussion with the health authorities to see what is needed, what do they need for the future,” Zinsou said.

In February this year, the FDA revoked the certificate of product registration of Dengvaxia.

Sanofi already filed an appeal two weeks ago and the DOH will release their decision on the issue on August 19.—AAC (with reports from Aiko Miguel)


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