The politics surrounding Dengvaxia

Before people get all too riled up about Dengvaxia and how it seems to have been politicized, it matters that we check our biases at the door first.

Because more than anything, Dengvaxia is a tragic story of past governmental incompetence owing to a rushed mass implementation of an unproven vaccine.

The fact that the vaccine was bought with rushed funds from indefensible sources, and rushed into mass vaccination campaigns despite the lack of proper technical endorsement, and pushed during a campaign period, at that, is where its chief controversy lies.

This penchant for rushing, without regard to proper funding and technical standards is where the violation meets its sanction.

Indictments of key persons like former President Benigno Aquino and health secretary Jeanette Garin for the alleged violations are at hand.

Thus, attempts to focus on the measles outbreak based on the fear of vaccines are a diversion to lead us away from the real issue- incompetence.

Measles vaccines are safe and effective, having been used for decades without major fault. This vaccine, unlike Dengvaxia passes crucial technical evaluations and have been consistently implemented.

Yet because of the incompetence unearthed due to a rushed implementation of the unproven dengvaxia vaccine, the entire vaccination program suffers.

The bigger question left unanswered is how government will assuage the fears of parents whose children now have a higher risk of contracting the disease? What justice will be served to them?

Or will we just ignore them because we believe the issue is "politicized" and hurts the chances of the "ostodiretso"?

The moral imperative at this point is to obtain justice for those wronged, that includes us due to the misuse of our taxpayer money by the indicted, and the families of those who are left with a higher risk of the disease owing to dengvaxia.

Moreover, we need to restore trust by ensuring that protocols for the approval of vaccines are judiciously done.

These, and not more politics, are necessary corrections to restore trust in the vaccination program and our health system in general."