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Decision on dengue vaccine upon NITAG recommendation: DGHS

The Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) has sought the advice of the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NITAG) on the use of dengue vaccine in Bangladesh.

Decision will be taken on the use of the vaccine only after getting the recommendation of the committee, said DGHS additional director general (planning and development) Professor Ahmedul Kabir at a virtual press briefing on Wednesday, UNB reports.

“Recently, the World Health Organization(WHO) approved the use of the ‘Qdenga’ vaccine. However, they have also given an age limit condition. This vaccine is nothing new. WHO’s advice is that this vaccine can be used. However, just because it (WHO) has cleared it, it cannot be said that it is an ideal vaccine,” said Ahmedul.

“In addition to ‘Qdenga’, there is another dengue vaccine called ‘Dengvaxia’. However, it is not possible use it without screening. This vaccine is effective against only one type of dengue. This vaccine is not safe for those who have not been infected with dengue before. In addition, children under the age of nine are not eligible for this vaccine,” he also said.
“We have told the NITAG about the vaccine. We cannot make any decision on dengue vaccine without consultation/recommendation. NITAG said it would hold a meeting soon and take a decision. If they give advice, we will sit to take a decision,”said the DGHS additional DG.

Responding to a question on when dengue infection will decrease, Ahmedul said, ‘If the temperature does not fall, the dengue infection may not decrease. Dengue now depends on temperature. If the rain does not stop, we’ll not see a decrease.’