HCMC runs out of two vaccines in expanded program on immunization

SGGP
The Department of Health of Ho Chi Minh City, on September 13, said that it had sent an urgent document to the People's Committee of HCMC and the Ministry of Health about the supply of measles and DPT vaccines (diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus) - two vaccines in the free-of-charge expanded program on immunization for children.
HCMC runs out of two vaccines in expanded program on immunization ảnh 1  It is extremely important to be vaccinated fully against measles on schedule to create early immunity to protect children from the disease. (Photo: SGGP)
According to the HCMC Department of Health, from May 2022 to August 2022, the HCMC Center for Disease Control (HCDC) did not receive measles and DPT vaccines from the HCMC Pasteur Institute. At the beginning of August 2022, the Department of Health sent a document to the HCMC Pasteur Institute on the situation of vaccine supply. The HCMC Pasteur Institute allocated 6,000 doses of the DPT vaccine with an expiry date of September 5, 2022, to HCDC on August 12. These vaccines have been now used up.

On August 31, HCMC Pasteur Institute announced that its vaccine storage had run out of measles and DPT vaccines. Therefore, the Department of Health of HCMC requested the Ministry of Health to direct the National Immunization Program to allocate enough vaccines following the registered quantity to ensure vaccination for people.

Previously, at the meeting of the Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control on September 7, Doctor Nguyen Huu Hung, Deputy Director of the Department of Health of HCMC, said that the city's expanded vaccination plan only reached 76.6 percent, while the target was 95 percent.

All 21 districts and Thu Duc City failed to complete the vaccination plan because of a lack of supply of single measles and DPT vaccines from June 2022. In addition, due to the change in personnel in charge of vaccination, the new staff has not yet grasped the techniques of child review and management.

Meanwhile, the HCMC Pasteur Institute has also run out of vaccines for many months due to difficulties in bidding and procurement.

The DPT vaccine against diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus, is produced by the Institute of Vaccines and Medical Biologicals (IVAC). The measles vaccine is produced by the Center for Research and Production of Vaccines and Biologicals (POLYVAC). These are two domestic units.

The measles vaccination schedule in the expanded program on immunization is two doses. The first dose should be started as soon as the child is nine months old, and the second one is injected when the child is 18 months old. It is extremely important to be vaccinated fully against measles on schedule to create early immunity to protect children from the disease. If vaccinated late, children will be at a very high risk of contracting measles before being vaccinated.

The DPT vaccine is for children from two months of age and older. According to the recommendations of the Ministry of Health, for maximum effectiveness, the DPT vaccine should be given when the child is at 15-18 months of age (the repeated dose) after having received the first three doses of the 5-in-1 vaccine in the expanded program on immunization and at least nine months apart from the third injection.

By Thanh Son – Translated by Thuy Doan

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