COVID-19 Vaccines: China Famous For Past Scandals Involving Fake Vaccines And Tainted Medicines Trying To be The First With A COVID-19 Vaccine!
With China’s PR machines in full swing telling the world about its progress in terms of creating a COVID-19 vaccine and the time frame it expects to roll it out for its country and the rest of the world, many health professionals elsewhere are either shaking their heads in horror or are having a long hilarious laugh. Chinese reputation and it past track record for tainted medications and fake vaccines is something that just cannot be washed away overnight by press releases. Many also shudder about the faith of its Chinese citizens who will most probably be forced to have these vaccines.
China claimed that it has mobilized its army and fast-tracked tests in the global race to find a coronavirus vaccine, but its labs also have an image tarnished by past health scandals to overcome.
Just months after the first cases emerged in the city of Wuhan, China has moved quickly to develop a vaccine and is involved in several of the dozen or so international clinical trials currently under way.
Chinese researchers claiming promising early results from tests on humans and monkeys, and authorities hope to have the first shots ready for the public this year.
It is said that Chinese Military Academy of Medical Sciences is among those working on a vaccine, in partnership with a pharmaceutical firm.
The country has authorized fast-track procedures, allowing preclinical phases such as animal tests and other studies to be conducted at the same time instead of one after the other.
However Professor Dr Ding Sheng, dean of the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Beijing's Tsinghua University, sounded a note of caution around using "non-conventional methods".
He said, "I understand that people are eagerly waiting for a vaccine. But on a scientific point of view, we can't lower our criteria, even in an emergency," he said.
He also questioned the decision to authorize phase one and two clinical trials at the same time, allowing labs to avoid having to seek authorization before proceeding from one to the other.
One boastful Chinese pharmaceutical company, Sinopharm, said its vaccine could be ready for the public at the end of the year.
Even the head of China's Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has said that a vaccine could be ready as early as September for priority cases, such as health workers.
However China will also have to convince the public that any vaccine it produces are safe as the country's pharmaceutical industry has been hit by scandals involving tainted medicine and corruption in recent years.
Only last year there were many drug recalls from around the world for blood pressure meds made in China that were contaminated with carcinogenic compounds. There have been so many such cases of tainted and inferior pharmaceuticals from China.
Chinese parents have held protests and some are scared enough to seek foreign-made vaccines for their children over those made in China.
A major and one of the biggest scandals involved Changchun Changsheng Biotechnology, which was fined a record US $1.3 billion in 2
018 after it fabricated records for a rabies vaccine for humans.
Interestingly the same company had also produced a vaccine for diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough (DPT) that was administered to more than 200,000 children and caused paralysis in a few cases.
Most importantly one of the companies involved in the search for a vaccine against the novel coronavirus was implicated in the scandal.
Most significantly the Wuhan Institute of Biological Products, from the city where the coronavirus first emerged late last year, produced 400,000 doses of DPT that "did not meet the norms", according to drug regulators.
The Chinese government responded by enacting legislation to tighten oversight and prevent defective shots from entering the market.
Several other cases have been reported by Chinese media in the past year, including fake vaccines in a southern hospital and children getting shots for the wrong illness in northern Hebei province.
If one was to really analyze just all the past cases of tainted medicines and vaccines in China over just the last 5 years, one would be running for their life if offered to take a China made vaccine for COVID-19 as no one could really predict which could be more deadly, the virus or the vaccine!
Off course there are corrupted governments in certain South-East Asian countries with stupid health authorities and healthcare professionals who will simply be the first to order these vaccines from China!
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