Duque hits Sanofi’s ‘mental dishonesty’ over Dengvaxia
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Monday accused the Dengvaxia manufacturer of “mental dishonesty” for not disclosing enough information on the vaccine, which he said have placed the lives of children on the line.
“I’m accusing them (Sanofi Pasteur) of mental dishonesty,” Duque told the Senate blue ribbon, health and finance committees.
“They could have been more forthright. I am pregnant with doubts, pardon me for my term, but I am pregnant with doubts that we should not allow this,” he added.
Another health expert, Dr. Mary Ann Lansang, shared the same sentiment to the panel.
“From my point of view it was premature to conduct a massive immunization program,” Lansang said.
Representatives from the French pharmaceutical company, Thomas Triomphe, Sanofi’s Asia Pacific head, and Dr. Kenneth Hartigan Go, have not been given the chance to directly address Duque’s statement, as of posting.
Duque said the vaccine was administered to around 830,000 children in schools and communities, and to another 32,000 private patients.
The DOH decided to suspend the administration of Dengvaxia vaccine and ordered the close observation of those who received it after Sanofi bared that its vaccine “could lead to more severe symptoms for people who had not previously been infected” by Dengue virus.
Asked by Senator Risa Hontiveros if Sanofi would be willing to shoulder the costs of the damage brought by the vaccine to families, Triomphe said they were willing to “work together” with the government.
“We have not seen any negligence on the part of the company. But we are willing to cooperate,” Triomphe said. /cbb
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