Health minister reassures parents after new vaccine brings strong reaction
  • | | January 30, 2019 09:42 PM
Despite the increasing number of children suffering from side effects of the ComBE Five vaccine, Minister of Health Nguyen Thi Kim Tien stressed that parents should follow compulsory vaccination to protect their children.

A baby gets vaccinated

In her visit to two medical clinics in Phu Nghia and Ngoc Hoa Communes in Hanoi's Chuong My District on January 9 following the death of two infants after getting ComBE Five vaccine injection a day earlier, the minister pointed out that it was normal to have a slight or serious reaction when people get vaccines.

According to the Hanoi Department of Health, nearly 1,000 infants in Chuong My Commune got shots of vaccine ComBE Five on January 8 and 16 percent of them had side effects from vaccination, but all are stable now thanks to timely treatment.

Half of the communes in 15 districts in Hanoi have administered the vaccine by January 8. Around 5,800 infants got shots of vaccine ComBe Five. One hundred and eighty of them had adverse side effects such as soreness, swelling, or redness at the point where the needle was injected, a reaction that was completely normal, according to the World Health Organisation and the Ministry of Health.

While the health minister continued to reassure parents and stressed the importance of vaccination, more cases of reaction have been reported in many localities nation-wide.

The ComBE Five vaccine

Six children were admitted to Dien Bien Province General Hospital in the northern province of Dien Bien on January 6 suffering side effects of the ComBE Five vaccine, three of them had serious reactions.

In Hai Phong Province, 31 children showed reactions including 10 having to hospitalised with shortness of breath, high fever, and cyanosis after getting ComBE Five on January 27.

The same day, more than 200 children in the two Mekong Delta provinces of Tien Giang and Ben Tre had to be brought to hospital with the same problems after getting the vaccine.

At a recent conference on the national expanded immunisation program hosted by the Ministry of Health, Dang Duc Anh, head of the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, said that 101,862 children had been injected with the vaccine.

Parents are instructed to monitor body temperature and take them to nearest medical clinics in cases where there is any severe reaction.

According to local reports, normal reactions such as mild fever or slight pain at the place the needle was used were reported in 1.73 per cent of the children. 0.05 per cent of vaccinated children had high fevers which stabilised after being treated by doctors.

“Parents need to tell doctors about their children’s health conditions, medicines they take, history of allergies and any reaction in previous immunisations,” said Tran Dac Phu, head of MoH’s General Department of Preventative Medicine.

“Children need to stay at medical centres 30 minutes after immunisation for doctors to monitor and properly handle any abnormal reactions.”

ComBE Five produced by Indian-based Biological E. Ltd has been used to replace Korean-made the Quinvaxem vaccine since May 2017 as part of Vietnam’s national expanded immunisation programme.

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