Possible side effects but H1N1 vaccine safe, says deputy minister

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 8 — The government has assured the public that the vaccine to treat and prevent Influenza A (H1N1) is safe to use although there are side effects like fever, rashes and body pains.

Deputy Health Minister Datuk Rosnah Abdul Rashid Shirlin said the people need not worry as the vaccine was safe despite several reported cases of side effects in Canada.

“They were isolated cases. The vaccine can defend frontliners and high risk groups in facing the Influenza A (H1N1) pandemic.

“The government is confident that the vaccine can control and defend frontliners in facing the second wave of H1N1,” she told Dewan Rakyat today.

Rosnah was replying to Dr Mohd Hatta Md Ramli (PAS-Kuala Krai) who questioned the vaccine’s safety as it was produced quickly and with no tests done on humans. H1N1 has claimed 77 lives in Malaysia since it was detected in April but has been on the decline since Sept 15 compared to Aug and early Sept.

She told Aaron Ago Dagang (BN-Kanowit) that deaths from dengue fever and HIV/AIDS showed a declining trend with 78 for dengue (until Nov 28, 2009) against 102 in 2005, and 600 for HIV/AIDS compared to 1,231 in 2005.

However, deaths from heart ailments rose to 7,597 last year compared to 5,549 in 2005 while 6,282 were killed in road accidents in 2007 compared to 6,223 in 2004. Ago Dagang had asked about the trend and death statistics due to dengue fever, heart ailment and road accidents over the last five years and efforts taken by the government to address them. — Bernama

source: here


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