Group urges gov’t to again allow use of Dengvaxia
MANILA, Philippines — An official of a non-profit organization advocating vaccination has called on the government to allow the return of Dengvaxia to help curb the spread of the mosquito-borne disease.
Doctor Lulu Bravo, executive director of the Philippine Foundation for Vaccination, said that aside from enforcing measures to decrease the population of mosquitoes carrying dengue virus, vaccination would sufficiently address its escalation.
“Ibalik ang Dengvaxia kasi kaming mananaliksik alam namin ang naging resulta ng mga test sa Dengvaxia. Maganda ang naging resulta niyan, ayon sa pananaliksik na ginawa hindi lang dito sa Asya,” she said in an interview with Radyo Inquirer.
(The government should again use Dengvaxia because researchers like us know the results of tests on Dengvaxia. The results were good according to research conducted not just here in Asia.)
She explained that in the past, vaccination has already helped eradicate other diseases, including smallpox, and helped limit the existence of polio in the world’s poorest and most marginalized communities.
“Ang bakuna ang pinakamabisa para ma-control ang sakit. 250 years na tayo sa bakuna (Vaccines are the best way to control the disease. We have been using vaccines for 250 years now),” she said.
Bravo also urged government authorities to tap the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a network of different research units specializing in health and socio-biomedical concerns, to conduct research on Dengvaxia. She noted that NIH is capable of conducting independent and unbiased research.
“’Pag ang pananalsiksik mo ay biased o kaya may prejudice o pamumulitika, hindi mangyayari na makagawa ka ng magandang pananaliksik. Independent body ang kailangan natin dyan,” she said.
(If your research is biased or have a prejudice or politicized, you will not be able to come up with good research. We will need an independent body.)
Dengvaxia “is the first dengue vaccine to be licensed. It was first licensed in Mexico in December 2015 for use in individuals 9-45 years of age living in endemic areas, and is now licensed in 20 countries,” according to the World Health Organization. /kga
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