Ex-Health chief: PAO partly to blame for Dengvaxia 'mass hysteria'

Former Health Secretary Dr. Esperanza Cabral recently told CNN Philippines, "The Source" that the public Attorney's Office (PAO) is also to blame as to why the public is experiencing "hysteria" over the dengue vaccine controversy.
Former Health Secretary Dr. Esperanza Cabral / Photo credit to CNN Philippines

"Nagkaroon na ng panic reaction, ng mass hysteria… at ito ay lumipat na hindi lang sa bakuna sa dengue, kung hindi sa bakuna ng ibang sakit na alam na alam nating kailangan nila ng bakuna katulad ng measles, ng polio, ng diphtheria,” said Cabral.

Cabral said that the panic of the public is also affecting other vaccination programs that already work.

Cabral also called on over 400 other doctors to convince the Department of Justice to stop PAO from investigating further into the effects of Dengvaxia via conducting autopsies on the children that have allegedly died because of the vaccine.

"If you look at the function of government agencies, each of us has functions that we need to perform. We do not see there the PAO having the mandate to establish a team that is going to do the autopsies themselves," Cabral said.

PAO Chief Persida Acosta addressed this by saying that the autopsies were done by the request of the families of the victims and she also denied causing the panic, adding Cabral’s statements only adds to the frustration of the people.

"Hindi PAO ang bumili at nagturok niyan. Kasasalita ni Dra. Cabral lalong nagagalit tao dahil she wants to stop ng determination of truth na asked by parents," the PAO chief said.

Cabral said that if these autopsies are extremely needed, then those who should conduct it are forensic experts and pathologists.

"'Yung pattern na sinasabi nila, pwedeng lumabas sa maski anong sakit. Hindi kinakailangan na dengue 'yung sakit para makakita yung enlargement na sinasabi nila. Sa baga, sa atay, sa utak," Cabral said. "Any kind of severe infection can produce that.”

She added that the process of these forensic pathologists take meticulous work and last over years. Those conducted by PAO however, finish so quickly.

"What these people do, they have the television crew inside the autopsy room. And right after they had cut the bodies up, not even after they have harvested the organs, they appeared on television with their hands bloody with their masks on, with their gowns on, to say that most likely, these patients died from Dengvaxia," Cabral said, referring to PAO.

University of the Philippines - Philippine General Hospital was also asked to investigate on the bodies of the victims.

The PAO however, does not work hand in hand with the UP-PGH because some of their pathologists have connections with Sanofi, according to Acosta.

Source: CNN Philippines
Ex-Health chief: PAO partly to blame for Dengvaxia 'mass hysteria' Ex-Health chief: PAO partly to blame for Dengvaxia 'mass hysteria' Reviewed by Nathan Singson on August 18, 2019 Rating: 5

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