In China, a recent series of scandals involving rabies and diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus (DPT) vaccines are affecting confidence in the country's vaccination management system, reports The Lancet.
A new editorial published in the journal describes how a Chinese vaccine maker was found to have fabricated production and inspection records and to have arbitrarily changed process parameters and equipment during its production of freeze-dried human rabies vaccines.
Furthermore, substandard DPT vaccines were administered to a reported 215,184 Chinese children; and 400,520 substandard DPT vaccines were sold in Hebei and Chongqing.
On July 25, China’s drug regulator launched an investigation into all vaccine producers across the country. A number of people have been detained by Chinese authorities.
This latest vaccine scandal follows on from a series of fake and substandard food and drugs issues in China. As a result, the editorial states, many parents have lost faith in the vaccine system.
Although no cases of death or other severe consequences relevant to the substandard rabies and DPT vaccines have been documented as of July 31, the substandard vaccines have been reported as being poisonous on social media.
The editorial urges the Chinese government to reform the country’s vaccine regulatory system, where necessary, to restore the public's confidence.