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Indian vaccine to replace 5-in-1 Quinvaxem: Health ministry

Update: April, 17/2018 - 15:00
A health worker administers vaccine to a baby at Hà Nội’s Health Preventive Medicine Centre. — VNA/VNS Photo Dương Ngọc
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Health said it would add three new types of vaccines for infants under the national expanded immunisation programme this year.

ComBe Five, an India-produced vaccine, will replace the Korean-made Quinvaxem to prevent five common, potentially fatal diseases—diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B and haemophilus influenza type B — in infants. 

Speaking at a press conference yesterday, Đặng Đức Anh, director of the ministry’s Institute of Hygiene Epidemiology, said vaccine producer Berna Boitech Korea Corporation had stopped the manufacture of Quinvaxem vaccine. The remaining stock of the vaccine was expected to be used completely by the end of May. Thus, the ministry had planned to switch to another type of five-in-one combination vaccine with the same composition and efficacy.

The transition to the new vaccine will be implemented nationwide in June. Hà Nam, Bình Định, Kon Tum and Đồng Tháp provinces will be among the first localities where the vaccine will be administered, Anh said.

Quinvaxem will still be administered to children under one until it is completely replaced, he added.

The five-in-one combination vaccine has been manufactured in India and got licensed by Việt Nam’s Ministry of Health in May 2017.

It has been approved by the World Health Organisation and has been used in more than 43 countries, with over 400 million doses administered to date.

No side effects of the vaccine were recorded in patients after they were administered in four districts of Hà Nam Province in 2016.

The five-in-one Qinvaxem vaccine was introduced in June 2010. Every year, some 1.6-1.7 million Vietnamese children under one are administered three doses of the vaccine. The national expanded programme on immunisation has used approximately 41 million doses of Quinvaxem to date.

The health ministry also said that the measles-rubella combination vaccine, which was produced in Việt Nam, and France-produced polio vaccine, will be incorporated in the National Expanded Programme on Immunisation in April this year.

The polio vaccine has been administered by the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation and provided by UNICEF.

Việt Nam officially announced polio eradication in 2000.

The measles-rubella vaccine has been administered in 19 provinces and cities nationwide.

According to reports of localities, over 50,000 children aged 18-24 months have been vaccinated, and no severe post-immunisation reaction has been reported. — VNS

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