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Dengvaxia

The gist of the Dengvaxia article published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine on June 13, 2018 says it all: Dengvaxia®: Protective value for people with at least one prior dengue infection confirmed; vaccinating people without prior infection not recommended.

The article, entitled “The Impact of Dengue Serostatus on Dengue vaccine Safety and Efficacy,” was written by a group of scientists from mostly tropical regions regularly affected by dengue such as the Philippines and Brazil. The group includes those working with then-Health Secretary Janet Garin at the Department of Health who were complicit in the unwarranted rush to inject the new drug despite cautionary advice from the World Health Organization not to proceed until further tests have been conducted as required for new products such as Dengvaxia. The study group presumably organized by Sanofi itself analyzed the data gathered in tests conducted on 830,000 children of various ages but mainly those aged nine years and above who were given the vaccine manufactured by the French pharmaceutical giant.

The study confirms what the WHO advised and issued prior to the tests on unsuspecting children who were used as guinea pigs by Sanofi and its enablers in the Aquino administration.

Indeed, as was belatedly advised and shared by Sanofi itself in some kind of a mea culpa last November 2017, months after it had already done its tests, the Dengvaxia vaccine can provide some kind of protection to those who have had prior dengue infection (seropositives) but could cause hospitalization and severe dengue to those who have yet to be infected (seronegatives). Not being a doctor or a scientist and not even a medical reporter and in order to avoid the possibility of missing out the full impact of this latest study I have taken the liberty of reprinting in this column the study bulletin as advised by, yes, Sanofi itself:

“...This new publication confirms the vaccine’s potential to prevent dengue, particularly severe dengue (84%) and hospitalizations due to dengue (80%) for the 5-year follow-up period of the study in individuals 9 years of age or older who have had a  prior dengue infection. This finding has also been fully documented and recognized by different experts including the WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization in their latest recommendation on the use of the vaccine which was published in their Weekly Epidemiological Report on 8th June 2018.

Dengue is the fastest growing mosquito borne disease in the world today with an estimated 1 million new infections reported daily. While severe dengue is rare overall, occurring in only 0.5% of all symptomatic cases of the disease, secondary infections with the virus are more likely than first infections to develop into severe disease. This unique feature of dengue infection is critical to understanding the new data on the dengue vaccine discussed in the New England Journal of Medicine article. In this supplementary analysis, we found an increased incidence of severe disease in vaccinated people without a prior infection compared to un-vaccinated people without a prior infection.

The relative risk of getting severe dengue from a mosquito bite post-vaccination for a study participant 9 years of age or older who had no prior infection was similar to that seen in an unvaccinated person who gets a secondary infection. More importantly, the degree of severity of the disease in vaccinated individuals responded well to medical care and all individuals recovered fully.

Based on this finding, reported in November 2017, Sanofi Pasteur has reached out to the national regulatory authorities in the countries where the vaccine is currently approved to propose an update to the prescribing information for the vaccine recommending use in individuals with prior dengue infection and warning against vaccination of those without prior infection. At present, several countries have already decided to move forward with the proposed label update and the rest are still reviewing it.

In sharing the new data on our dengue vaccine, Sanofi Pasteur has realized the increasing importance of being able to communicate complex science in an understandable way to avoid unnecessary anxiety and correct any misunderstanding in the public about the safety or efficacy of our vaccines.

Sanofi Pasteur has a long-standing commitment to the global fight against dengue. We will make every effort to facilitate access to the dengue vaccine for people who have had at least one dengue infection already and could, therefore, benefit significantly from the vaccine’s high degree of protection against subsequent infections with dengue....”

So there. With this latest study vetted by no less than the most prestigious medical journal in the United States, it is time for those who conspired with Sanofi in making guinea pigs of almost a million Filipino children and a good number of adults (remember the Quezon City policemen who were also inveigled to take Dengvaxia) and those who were cajoled by their own doctors in private hospitals to buy from the market, to make amends. Sanofi is doing its level best to steel itself from the lawsuits which will surely come its way with a series of mea culpa initiatives including this latest study.

Of course, PNoy and his gang are busy defending themselves from the lawsuits which have been filed and from being further tainted by the findings of both the Senate and the House inquiries which clearly show their utter neglect and insensitivity in this deadly experiment. As for the so-called experts including the country’s highly regarded medical practitioners and their NGO cohorts and other individuals who should have known better than joining the pro-Dengvaxia fray, may you live to witness the agony and the anxiety of those who have been shamelessly collared to serve, like the Holocaust victims, as the fodder to this deadly experimentation.

I will say it again what I have been saying long before this latest hyped incident about the forced exchange (barter as some Palace insiders called it) of goods in the high seas between our fishermen and some Chinese coast guard personnel happened. Let us permanently station our own Coast Guard vessel in the vicinity of Panatag shoal eyeball-to-eyeball with the Chinese and have a flotilla of fishing vessels fish inside the lagoon every week. That way we can at least minimize the possibility of continued bullying by the Chinese of our fisher folks.

I am sure that will also accelerate remedial action by the Chinese government to ensure free and untrammeled access to the fishing grounds just like before. Remember that the escalation of the ‘conflict’ in Panatag was when we confiscated the haul of fish and giant clams from Chinese fishermen and brought them to court a year or so into the PNoy administration. The rest, as they say, is now our ongoing story of bombasts, fake accounts and contrived scenarios of war and destruction by anti-Duterte groups.

But the best action we should now take remains the fortification and full usage of our occupied islands and islets in the Spratlys called the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG). As our friend, Bobbi Tiglao, has time and again advised bring this administration’s signature Build, Build, Build program to the Spratlys to somehow prepare us for the eventual stabilization of relations among the claimants to islands, islets and other rock formations in that vast body of water. Period. 

Topics: Dengvaxia , New England Journal of Medicine , Janet Garin , Department of Health , World Health Organization
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