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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

7/28/2014 (9 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Will assist poorer Southeast Asian countries with immunizations

China is expected to begin exporting a manufactured vaccine for Japanese encephalitis by early 2015 to needy Southeast Asian countries.

Japanese encephalitis is a disease caused by the mosquito-borne Japanese encephalitis virus. The Japanese encephalitis virus has an incubation perioid of 5 to 15 days.

Japanese encephalitis is a disease caused by the mosquito-borne Japanese encephalitis virus. The Japanese encephalitis virus has an incubation perioid of 5 to 15 days.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/28/2014 (9 months ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: International, Asia, China, Health


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The vaccine is intended to protect children in those poor countries from the deadly virus.

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"So far, we've received an application for JE vaccine support from Laos, and we are still open to applications from other ... eligible countries also burdened by the disease," said Seth Berkley, CEO of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI)-a public/private global health partnership.

If everything goes according to plan, "children in applicant countries will get the shots in the first quarter of 2015", he said.

This announcement follows a report published earlier in July by Margaret Chan, director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO), that the China Food and Drug Administration's regulatory system for vaccines had passed the WHO's assessment.

The vaccine, produced by Chengdu Institute of Biological Products of Sinopharm received WHO pre-qualification in October, which confirms that the vaccine is up to international standards for quality, safety and efficacy.

This makes it the first Chinese-made vaccine officially recognized by the program, and according to Bernhard Schwartlander, the WHO representative in China, it won' be the last.

More than 4 billion people suffer inside Japanese encephalitis-endemic areas worldwide, and most of these are located in Southeast Asia and the western Pacific, the WHO reported.

Countries with annual per capita incomes under $1,570 are eligible to apply for vaccine support and this list includes Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Vietnam and Cambodia.

"Applications are accepted on condition that the vaccine will be included in the national immunization programs of the aided countries," said Zhang Li, the senior manager of GAVI.

Berkley, the CEO of the global alliance, said that: "China's vaccine industry is highly likely to benefit children in poor countries with quality vaccines at affordable prices."

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