Opinion / Opinion Line

Dereliction of duty led to vaccine scandal and endangered kids' lives

(China Daily) Updated: 2015-09-21 07:41

At least 360 infants in Zhoukou city, Central China's Henan province, have been reportedly given expired vaccines as part of the routine childhood vaccination since last June. Two of the infants have died and one is in hospital. The local health bureau said relevant departments have formed an investigation team to deal with the case. Comments:

Both the local center for disease control and prevention and food and drug administration should be held responsible for poor management of vaccines. Instead of holding all the employees accountable and offering proper compensation to the victim families, the local disease control center just fired the person who injected the vaccines in the hope of defusing the crisis. Also, the expired vaccines are likely to be just the tip of the iceberg given the lack of supervision and poor healthcare conditions in rural areas.

Beijing News, Sept 19

The local government's credibility has been seriously damaged. Since those responsible for the incident have played with children's lives, they deserve to be strictly punished in accordance with the law. If necessary, they should be put behind bars to prompt them to reflect on their action, and send a message to other public servants that they should sincerely fulfill their duties., Sept 20

All the people responsible for the incident should be strictly dealt with according to the law. The well-trained medical staff should have realized that the vaccines had expired, because they could cause lethal damage to infants. They should be held accountable for committing a calculated crime if they gave the expired vaccines to infants on purpose., Sept 20

The use of expired vaccines should serve as a serious warning to governments at all levels that storage and distribution of vaccines and medicines should be properly managed, and the performance of their healthcare departments improved. Besides, there is need for specific legislation on vaccine-related cases., Sept 20

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