Taiwan halts use of Vaxigrip flu vaccines over safety concerns

Irregularities have been found in a Vaxigrip (巴斯德) vaccine in Taipei

The problematic vaccine (Photo/CNA, CDC)

The problematic vaccine (Photo/CNA, CDC)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwan’s Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have decided to halt the use of Vaxigrip (巴斯德) influenza vaccines as part of its free public immunization program due to an irregularity being reported with one of the vaccine vials appearing to have “changed color.”

According to Taipei’s Department of Health, medical staff of a hospital had filed a complaint about an unopened vaccine which should have appeared transparent, but the liquid in the vial seemed to have turned brown. The shot was to have been administered at Taipei City Hospital Linsen Chinese Medicine Branch, reported UDN.

Upon receiving the report, CDC immediately conducted a thorough examination of a number of vaccine samples, but no other irregularities were found. CDC believed it was a single case but had ordered medical facilities to cease administering the total of 190,000 Vaxigrip influenza vaccines as a precautionary measure, reported CNA.

Taiwan’s health authorities called upon the public not to worry about the safety of flu shots, as there is an alternative called the AdimFlu-S produced by Adimmune Corporation (國光生技).

The cause of the irregularity on the Vaxigrip (巴斯德) influenza vaccine has yet to be identified. The problematic product will be sent back to France by its manufacturer Sanofi Pasteur (賽諾菲) for further investigation, wrote CNA.