WHO Responds to Vaccine Report in China
WHO is aware of reports of vaccines being purchased by a private family and resold to hospitals and clinics. Chinese authorities are currently investigating the case and will made the results public in coming days. WHO awaits the investigation results and stands ready to provide support to national health authorities.
Vaccines need to be store and managed properly or they can lose potency and become less effective. It is important to note, however, that improperly stored or expired vaccine seldom if ever causes a toxic reaction – therefore there is likely to be minimal safety risk in this particular situation. The risk to children is lack of protection from the disease for which the vaccine was intended.
Vaccines used in China’s Expanded Program on Immunization are known to be safe and effective, and have eliminated polio and neonatal tetanus and reduced vaccine preventable diseases to very low levels in China. WHO encourages parents continue to protect their children from vaccine preventable diseases through China’s routine Expanded Program on Immunization.