China / Society

Vaccine concerns must be tackled promptly

By Li Yang ( Updated: 2014-01-07 14:06

The government needs to establish a vaccine risk prevention and control system to protect the interests and safety of the public, says an article of the Southern Metropolis Daily.

The China Food and Drug Administration and the National Health and Family Planning Commission of China issued results of a joint investigation on Jan 3 concerning 18 deaths and adverse reactions possibly linked to hepatitis B vaccines made by a Chinese pharmaceutical company.

It found that, except for one case of abnormal reaction, the cause of which cannot be determined, the other deaths and adverse reaction cases were not caused by the vaccine.

Despite this, the disease prevention and control authority indicated that public health departments are considering establishing an information and data disclosure system concerning abnormal reactions to vaccinations.

The public do not have the expertise to judge the safety of the vaccines. The medical care authorities have an obligation to keep parents informed of the vaccination's possible effects on infants and treat babies suffering from any adverse and abnormal reactions.

Moreover, there should also be a system ensuring victim families be compensated and treated properly.

The government must draw lessons from the hepatitis B vaccine incident and establish an effective mechanism to guarantee the public interest and protect lives.

If vaccination-related incidents occur, the government should act quickly to find the causes and respond to the public concern as soon as possible.

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