By Mary Gleefer F Jalea/Manila Times
Parents of children inoculated with Dengvaxia took to Facebook to share their fears and sentiments on the controversy and to help each other as government continues to monitor those who got the anti-dengue vaccine.
As of yesterday, the closed group had 23,486 members.
One of the group’s members told Manila Times that members of the Facebook group come from different areas and were part of smaller chapters.
“Some come from Las Pinas, Bulacan. We have smaller groups and we chat, we get to know other parents’ sentiments,” Sandra said.
Sandra said her nine-year-old son was given a shot of Dengvaxia in a health centre in Las Pinas in December 2017.
When she joined the group, she learned about other parents who were planning to visit the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) to seek assistance.
Joy Balbaribo, who hails from Baliwag, Bulacan, was one of those who sought the help of PAO.“My son got three shots — the first on April 2, 2016, the second in December 2016 and the third in August 2017,” she said.
Balbaribo shared that her son Maverick had a headache on the first day of the shot.
The French pharmaceutical company Sanofi Pasteur warned in December 2017 that Dengvaxia may be harmful to those who have not been exposed to the dengue virus.
Other Facebook groups related to the Dengvaxia controversy were “Parents/Guardians of Dengvaxia recipients” that had 433 members; “Dengvaxia Track” with 317 members; and “700K Virus-Dengvaxia” with 276 members, to name a few.
Some open groups showed posts from parents sharing news articles, reactions on the controversial issue, and symptoms of severe dengue to inform each other.
“Are we going to wait for our children to die? They tell us Dengvaxia does not kill, that we only have to give our children nutritious food. We are poor, how can we afford that especially if they fall ill?” Barbarido said.
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