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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Blogger writes a striking open letter to President Duterte on Dengvaxia issue

RJ Nieto and President Rodrigo Duterte, photo from thinkingpinoy.net
"Dear Mr. President, here's the memo you asked for."

Blogger and government employee RJ Nieto through his site Thinking Pinoy, gave a message to President Rodrigo Duterte on the issue of Dengvaxia, one which he claims was asked of him by the President himself during a "bloggers' Christmas Party" in Malacanang.



In the "memo", Nieto explained how the situation got worse, and the measures that the President can take regarding the issue to aid the citizenry.

In early April 2016, uner the orders of President Benigno Aquino III and Department of Health Secretary Janette Garin, the DOH launched a massive anti-dengue immunization program to supposedly cover 1 million fourth grade students in Central Luzon, CALABARZON and NCR.

The government spent 3.5 billion pesos on the project and administered the drug to 830,000 school children.

Nieto said that during that time, Sanofi Pasteur, the maker of Dengvaxia, had warned about vaccinating those with no history of Dengue.

Dengue generally shows severe symptoms when a person has contracted it twice. The first time would be only mild, such that many people do not even have knowledge that they already have contracted Dengue.



What Dengxvaxia does is make the effects severe when a person contracts Dengue for the first time. Thus, it is beneficial only to those who have already contracted Dengue, but is hazardous for those who have yet to do so.

Nieto said that Sanofi during that time  was "a bit sneaky" whn it warned of this "theoretical risk".

Sanofi found these dangers from those tested and are aged 9 and below. Thus, the drug was given to those above nine,. However, Sanofi, according to Nieto did not actually test those 9 and above.

He also said that DOH injected the drug, despite not confirming which of the patients have not had Dengue beforehand.

Nieto said that the DOH relied on studies in Puerto Princesa and Cebu which showed that 90 percent of 1000residents were seropositive, which he said is "bad math" as the results in Cebu do not reflect those from Luzon, were the project was focused.



Nieto alleged that there was corruption in the procurement of the drug, as the Aquino administration had been in talks with Sanofi as early as 2014, and in 2015, Garin met with Sanofi in France, and later on in the same year, Garin and other cabinet members met with Sanofi in the Paris accord meeting.s, less than a month after that, a budget was already prepared by the DBM.

Nieto also alleged that the DOH is performing "cover-ups". after he met a Dengvaxia injected girl in Tarlac, and when he looked for her again, she was "whisked away" to Pampanga.

"I smell a cover-up," he said.

He also alleged that several congressmen, even including residential Spokesperson Harry Roque, attempted Dengvaxia resource persons to testify, citing how he prevented a former health associate, Dr. Tony Leachon, that he cannot be allowed to testify.

Nieto then gave tips for President Duterte on the measures he could take.

He said that the President needs to ask for airtime and explain the situation to the country as well as his planned steps, to create an emergency fund for the patients, and lasty to help restpre trust in the publis health system by rooting out officials who are involved in the issue.

Source: thinkingpinoy.net

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