Press Release/February 15, 2018
Secretary Francisco T. Duque III on Wednesday reiterated his pledge to look after the needs of all vaccinated children and address the gaps observed in the rollout and implementation of the first dengue vaccine, Dengvaxia.
"I would like to assure the parents and the public that investigations are currently underway. Should there be any DOH official who will be proven to have transgressed any law or deviate from standard operating procedures in relation to the purchase and implementation of the dengue vaccine, I will make sure that they will face justice," Duque assured the parents of the Dengvaxia recipients.
The health chief emphasized his commitment to also unveil the truth with regard to the hasty implementation of the dengue vaccination program since March 2016 and vowed full cooperation and transparency in the submission of documents to the Department of Justice and both houses of Congress who are separately conducting investigation on the now suspended dengue vaccination program.
“I deny any accusation that I am obstructing justice. I am not protecting anyone, most especially those allegedly involved in the controversial implementation of the dengue immunization. I am also after the truth and I am for the correction of the deficiencies observed in the rollout of the program,” Duque said.
The dengue vaccination program of the DOH started with the administration of former Secretary Janette Garin. It was Secretary Duque who ordered the termination of the dengue mass vaccination program after Sanofi-Pasteur, manufacturer of Dengvaxia, reported certain adverse effects following immunization.
"After Sanofi-Pasteur made public certain adverse effects caused by the vaccine following immunization, I ordered the immediate termination of the program," Duque said.
Amidst ongoing investigations, the DOH is more focused on attending to the concerns of the more than 830,000 vaccine recipients and their families.