Good news! The dengue vaccine developed by French company Sanofi will be available in the Philippine market next week, according to Department of Health Secretary Janet Garin.
On the government's side, it says it will give the vaccine to children from 9 to 10 years old or public school students in Grades 4 and 5 for free this coming March. This applies to public schools in NCR, Central Luzon (Region 3), and Calabarzon (Region 4-A)—areas that have the hightest number of dengue cases.
While there's still no word on the price of the vaccine, it's bound to be steep for private patients. The government has set P3 billion in the 2016 budget for the dengue vaccine, which is expensive to begin with because only one company is producing it. Garin assures us though that part of the amount from the sale of the dengue vaccine to private patients will be used to subsidize the government's beneficiaries (aka the marginalized/the poorest of the poor); it could also be included in PhilHealth.
Remember that the dengue vaccine is only recommended for people from 9 to 45 years old, so you might as well have it early on to prevent contracting severe dengue and four types of the dengue virus. Contact your doctor about getting the vaccine.
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