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Sanofi should also put up compensation, monitoring fund – Gordon

Sen. Richard Gordon INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/LYN RILLON

More than reimbursing the government of the P1.4-billion unused stock of Dengvaxia vaccine, French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi Pasteur should set up compensation and monitoring fund for people administered with the immunization, Sen. Richard “Dick” Gordon said on Tuesday.

“More than just reimbursing the government for the P1.4-billion unused stock of Dengvaxia or even for the cost of the total order, Sanofi should make provisions for the people, both children and adults, who were injected with the vaccine, for the monitoring and hospitalization and in the case of death, to provide full support to the families,” Gordon said in a statement.

Gordon, chairman of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, said the fund should be used in monitoring and supporting the treatment and hospitalization of the individuals affected.

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“This is similar to what Sanofi did in 2016, when a class suit was filed against the company due to its medicinal products (Dépakine, Micropakine, Dépakote, Dépamide and generics) that may have created birth malformations and developmental disorders which led the French public authorities to create a Compensation Fund to answer for the damage/s caused,” Gordon added.

Sanofi has agreed to reimburse the Philippine government for the P1.4-billion unused stock of dengue vaccine Dengvaxia stored at Department of Health warehouses.

In November last year, Sanofi admitted that Dengvaxia may cause severe dengue in people administered with the vaccine who are seronegative or have not had dengue fever prior to the inoculation.

The discovery has prompted the government to suspend the program, wherein more than 800,000 public schoolchildren 9 years old and above in three highly endemic regions – Metro Manila, Central Luzon and Calabarzon – have received at least the first of three doses of the first licensed dengue vaccine.

The botched program has drawn public criticism and raised questions on the validity of the “hasty” purchase of the P3.5-billion vaccine in 2015 when it has yet to undergo complete laboratory testing.

The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, together with the committees on health and finance, will hold its fourth hearing on Monday to look into the circumstances that led to the procurement of the vaccine.

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