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AACI urges govt to amend draft 'National Vaccine Policy' for conflicts of interests

Ramesh Shankar, Mumbai
Monday, September 26, 2011, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Concerned about the draft National Vaccine Policy going the PPP way, which  'will promote the profits of private manufactures at the expense public health and safety', the Alliance Against Conflict of Interest (AACI) has demanded  the union health ministry to amend the Policy to take into consideration the principles of conflicts of interests and not to enter into any advance marketing commitment to the vaccine manufacturers for the vaccines whose efficacy and cost effectiveness in the Indian context has not been proven yet.

The AACI also urged the Supreme Court of India to take cognizance of potential conflicts of interests in the national vaccine policy of government of India and the IAP Committee on immunization for both pushing new vaccines for the children of India.

AACI is an alliance of organisations and individuals working in various sectors – doctors, lawyers, women’s and children’s health groups, activists and media.

Questioning the Policy and the resolve of Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP) Committee on Immunization, the AACI also expressed concern that irrational vaccines are being introduced in the public health system under the influence of vaccine manufacturers and international agencies like World Health Organization (WHO), without proper epidemiological and medical studies in the absence of a rational policy.

The AACI also demanded that the government should come out with a plan to transparently evaluate the need for any vaccine, which must have demonstrable cost-effectiveness and that benefits of vaccines must be reported in terms of absolute risk reduction.

Demanding that the government should present a time bound plan to achieve 100 per cent coverage of agreed routine vaccines with a priority to cover rural and poor children first, the AACI also called upon the IAP that a strong and clear policy on conflicts of interest be established in the IAP functions, including the committee on immunization as its decisions concern health of India’s children. IAP should set out a clear framework for those engaging the vaccine manufacturers and for managing conflicts of interest.

The IAP should issue a position paper on Absolute risk reduction by the newly to be introduced vaccines, and base its decisions on these figures when it recommends newer vaccines to include in its schedule, the AACI said.


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Mathew Arora Sep 26, 2011 4:57 PM
I completely agree that vaccine manufacturers should not profit from the introduction of vaccines in India. In fact, no private sector company should make money from providing to the government. State controlled communism has a strong track record in both Russia and in India.
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