Dengue vaccine: DRAP says following WHO guidelines

Regulator trashes allegation of kickbacks in approving the drug


Our Correspondent January 05, 2018
PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: The drug regulator has said it decided to adopt latest World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines for the administration of dengue vaccine under strict medical supervision as it is not banned in any part of the world.

In a statement issued on Thursday the spokesperson of Drug Regulatory Authority (Drap) said Registration Board registered dengue vaccine a few months back after recommendations of WHO for countries having high prevalence of dengue.

Same vaccine is recently registered in 17 countries of world including Australia, Brazil and Indonesia.

After news from the Philippines regarding adverse effects of dengue vaccine in routine immunisation programme, the Registration Board again reviewed recent recommendations of WHO and decided to adopt latest WHO guidelines for the administration of dengue vaccine under strict medical supervision as it is not banned in any part of the world. It clarified that dengue vaccine will be available in market after fixation of price.

However, final decision will be taken keeping in view parameters of safety, efficacy and quality and in consultation with provincial governments, so that patients could be saved especially who are exposed to dengue virus for the second time which is more fatal.

Allegations

The statement was issued after a press conference of Pakistan Young Pharmacist Association (YPA) and Pakistan Drug Lawyers Forum who had alleged in the briefing that Drap registered the vaccine after receiving huge bribe from a multinational company, which killed children in Philippines in the November 2017 and banned by the WHO.

The lawyers further alleged that huge quantity of infected milk was imported by the companies and sold to infants, which was forcefully withdrawn world over but still everything is in grey in Pakistan. Drap responding to the milk allegation said it was withdrawn from all markets in Pakistan in a coordinated effort of the authority, ministry of national health and WHO.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 5th, 2018.

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