A CONGRESSWOMAN who allowed the use of the Dengvaxia vaccines during her stint as health secretary has challenged the businessmen behind non-proven supplements not to take advantage of the national dengue epidemic situation by promoting their products as cure for the dreaded virus.
House Deputy Minority Leader and Iloilo Rep. Janette Garin said businessmen should not add to the sufferings of families of dengue virus victims by allegedly misleading the public about their non-scientific products.
“May we also appeal to the entrepreneurial minds of some. It’s tragic to see families lose their loved ones to this deadly dengue virus. Please, let us not take advantage of the demise of some to promote non-scientific remedies,” Garin explained.
“Sixty to 70% of the high out of pocket expenditures of Filipinos are due to non-proven supplements. While we can advocate for these, let us not make our people believe that these can cure dengue. At this very challenging time, let us not add on to the unnecessary costs of dengue victims,” Garin added.
Garin also lauded President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte for expressing openness to making Dengvaxia available again in the Philippines on condition that local health experts green-light its use.
“We laud his (President Duterte) political will in coming out and openly declaring his support to factual science. As I have mentioned before, only the President can stop the anti-vaccines and the naturalists from deceiving the public. While we respect their belief that WHO’s (World Health Organization) mortalities and morbidities are just ‘bad science’, we call on them to put a limit to their advocacy especially that it is clear —— people are dying and getting sick. No cure,” said Garin.
“If it means saving people’s lives, I would go for it,” said President Duterte.
Earlier, Garin vowed to resign from her post should a new strain of the dengue virus is proven to be the cause of the rise of the dengue cases in the country.
Last week, the government declared a national dengue epidemic due to the rising cases of the mosquito-borne disease in parts of the country.