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Vietnam approves first dengue vaccine from Japan’s Takeda

Vietnam approves first dengue vaccine from Japan’s Takeda

Thursday, May 16, 2024, 16:25 GMT+7
Vietnam approves first dengue vaccine from Japan’s Takeda
A medical worker tends to a dengue fever patient in Vietnam. Photo: Tuoi Tre

The Vietnamese Ministry of Health on Wednesday licensed a dengue fever vaccine manufactured by Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited for circulation, marking the first dengue vaccine eligible to be circulated in the Southeast Asian country.

According to a statement released on Thursday, Takeda’s dengue vaccine is approved for individuals aged four years and older, regardless of prior infection status, making it the first dengue vaccine licensed in Vietnam without pre-vaccination testing. 

The newly approved dengue vaccine is expected to be available at selected vaccination centers in Vietnam from September. 

Takeda’s vaccine has obtained approval in over 30 countries, including those in the European Union, the United Kingdom, Brazil, Argentina, Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia, and has been integrated into national vaccination programs in Brazil and Argentina.

Katharina Geppert, country manager of Takeda Vietnam, hailed the Vietnamese Ministry of Health’s approval of the dengue vaccine as a significant step in combating dengue fever, marking a major milestone for Takeda and public health prevention efforts against dengue-related health risks. 

Geppert also emphasized that vaccines will complement existing preventive measures in dengue fever management, aiding in reducing its negative impacts. 

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co's logo is seen at its new headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, July 2, 2018. Photo: Reuters

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co.'s logo is seen at its new headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, July 2, 2018. Photo: Reuters

Takeda Vietnam pledges to collaborate with regulatory bodies, medical experts, professional associations, research institutes, government agencies, private organizations, and other stakeholders to collectively combat dengue fever in Vietnam and beyond. 

Dengue fever, a mosquito-borne viral disease, poses significant global health threats, prevalent in over 125 countries. 

Vietnam recorded 16,000 dengue fever cases from January 1 to April 25. 

The Department of Preventive Medicine, under the Ministry of Health, reported that tests conducted on patients revealed the presence of all four serotypes responsible for dengue fever, with DEN-2 accounting for 88 percent of the total infections in 2023 and 70 percent in 2024.

Assoc Prof. Dr. Pham Quang Thai, vice-head of the Communicable Diseases Control and Prevention Department at the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology of Vietnam, noted that climate change has led to a rise in dengue fever cases, creating pressure and causing overloads for medical facilities.

“Alongside vector control, early outbreak detection, well-structured treatment protocols, and the improvement of facilities and equipment to reduce mortality rates, the authorization of dengue fever vaccines offers additional, specific tools to bolster dengue prevention efforts,” Thai said.

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Bao Anh - Hong Ha / Tuoi Tre News

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