Sale of vaccines, home inoculations denounced

A neophyte solon called the attention of the government to the reported unregulated sale of vaccines online and to the business  of home vaccination by non-medical practitioners.

ACT-CIS Party-list Rep. Niña Taduran was alarmed by the reports on the sale of vaccines online.

The Philippine Pediatric Society’s (PPS) has issued an advisory regarding the reported unethical sale and use of vaccines, with some nurses, midwives and other healthcare workers allegedly doing home vaccination as a business.

“Vaccines should be dispensed only to doctors and must be properly handled, stored and transported because these are biological products. Hindi puwedeng basta ibenta sa kahit sino, kahit na nurse pa o midwife. At hindi rin sila puwedeng mag-home service at basta isaksak sa mga pasyente,”  Taduran said.

Law enforcement agencies should look into this, Taduran said as there might be

some unscrupulous individuals taking advantage of the quarantine and offering home vaccinations to those who are afraid to go out and be inoculated in health centers or private clinics.

“The Department of Health and the Food and Drug Administration should look into these reported illegal vaccinations and unregulated sale of vaccines online. This is very dangerous because we don’t even know if these vaccines are genuine. Those who sell online or directly to people who are not authorized or qualified to vaccinate should answer to the law,”  Taduran said.

PPS says that only doctors are licensed to administer vaccines as these are prescription drugs. Nurses, midwives and other healthcare workers are not allowed to prescribe medicines but may perform the procedure only in the presence of a duly licensed physician. The doctor will be responsible for the procedure and outcome of the vaccination.

The law also prohibits the sale and advertisement of ethical drugs, including biologicals and vaccines, on any media platform, even on online media. This is covered under Administrative Order 55 series of 1989 of the FDA on Guidelines on Advertisement and Promotions to Implement the Generics Act of 1988.