Govt of India admits to 644 vaccine deaths.

Deaths of Children Due to Vaccination
Vaccines for the inoculation of children are manufactured as per conditions of the License under the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules and are required to conform to the Good Manufacturing practices prescribed therein. Beside this, under Universal Immunization Programme (UIP), each batch of vaccine is released only after certification by Central Drugs Laboratory, KasauliHimachal Pradesh.
            The ingredients or preservative used in the manufacturing of vaccines are well within the permissible safe limits as per National/International norms.
Mercury, as such, is not used as a component in the manufacturing of vaccines. However, Thiomersal used as preservative in multi-dose vaccine vial contains ethyl mercury which is safe as per the Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety (GACVS) of WHO. The committee concludes that there is no evidence of toxicity in infants, children or adults exposed to Thiomersal in vaccines. The Thiomersal containing vaccine UIP are (i) Diphtheria, Pertussis, Tetanus (DPT) (ii) Tetanus Toxiod (TT) (iii) Hepatitis B and (iv) Pentavalent vaccine (DPT + Hepatitis B + Haemophilus influenzae type B)
            As per available record, total number of deaths following immunization in the country (AEFI) during the last one decade is 644.
           The various measures taken by the Government in this regard are asunder :-
§  From time to time, instructions are issue by the Central Government on ‘dos and don’ts’ to prevent Adverse Event Following Immunization (AEFI) due to programmatic error. This is supported by Supervisory visits to monitor and review immunization programme.
§  Actions taken on reported AEFI cases due to programmatic error.

         Measure taken to strengthen AEFI reporting:-
§  AEFI guidelines revised in 2010 and disseminated.
§  Strengthen training of officers on AEFI associated with immunization at various levels including AEFI cases management.

 The above information was given by the Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.

(Release ID :87561)