In a recently released statement, the Commission on Human Rights has called on the public to think about the more important issue in the Dengvaxia controversy and to avoid politicizing it.
“It is to the best interest of the children and their families that this issue be insulated from political noise that distracts from providing genuine and durable solution to the problem at hand,” read the statement.
They added that further politicizing the issue is bringing on more panic and anxiety toward the children who have been vaccinated, and towards their families as well.
The public clamour and comments that are not back with facts or science is not helping the families, and is in fact, giving them more things to worry about.
CHR is not all talk, however. They said that they are monitoring the efforts of the Department of Health to address the controversy.
The government as well has stopped the anti-dengue vaccination program.
“As duty-bearers, public officials and our leaders are presumed as much as they are always expected to put utmost premium on the welfare of children when formulating and implementing policies and programs,” said the CHR.
“Yet, executives of the DOH during the Aquino administration are now subject of an investigation in connection with the immunization of children with anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia. While DOH is presumed to have the sincerest intentions in fulfilling its mandate to protect the people through a policy that seeks to prevent all kinds of illnesses and diseases including dengue, there has been lapses in the implementation,” it added.
Officials who are directly involved in the Dengvaxia scandal are also currently being investigated.
“In keeping with its constitutional mandate, the CHR is continuing its investigative monitoring of the DOH’s efforts with regard to this issue – both at national and regional offices – which also includes the DOH’s responsibility of strengthening the preparedness of public hospitals to attend to any severe dengue cases,” it added.
Up to date, there have been a handful of deaths of children who were vaccinated with the Dengvaxia vaccine.
The CHR and DOH are increasing their efforts to fix the issue.
“Ensuring the protection of children is our collective duty and moral responsibility,” said the agency.
“The imperative of safeguarding our children entails not exposing them to any vulnerability and harm, especially to their health which is primordial in the attainment of their full development and enjoyment of life,” they said.