The five-year-old boy was among millions of children who were immunized with the Measles and Rubella joint vaccine that has since been introduced into the country’s immunization schedule. But he, and his siblings developed a skin rash and red eyes, which, according to family members, was in reaction to the vaccine.
Preliminary results from both the
Uganda Virus Research Institute and the World Health Organization have ruled
out the measles/Rubella Vaccine as the cause of death for a young boy who died
after the Mass Vaccination held in October.
The five-year-old boy was among
millions of children who were immunized with the Measles and Rubella joint
vaccine that has since been introduced into the country’s immunization
schedule. But he, and his siblings developed a skin rash and red eyes, which,
according to family members, was in reaction to the vaccine.
But the boy was later diagnosed
with Stevenson Johnson syndrome, a severe skin and mucus membrane disorder that
normally occurs as a reaction to medication or an infection. He died at the
pediatric unit in Mulago National Referral Hospital.
Following the death, the health
the ministry was asked by the World Health Organisation to continue carrying out
investigations about reactions to the vaccine. Dr Immaculate Ampaire, the Deputy
Manager of the Uganda National Expanded Programme on Immunization-UNEPI says
that this was done in light of the new vaccine.
//Cue in; “We were advised…
Cue out…routine immunization.”//
Data from the health ministry
shows that over 18 million children were vaccinated and 90 reports of adverse
events reported from different districts. Three of the reported cases were
adverse and had their samples flown to the Center for Diseases Control in the
The United States.
According to Dr Ampaire,
investigations that are being carried out have not led to any new reports of
adverse reactions to the vaccine. Similarly,
Health Minister Dr Jane Ruth Aceng says that subsequent investigations have
indicated that the condition was not caused by the vaccine.
"The results in Uganda show
that it is not related to the Measles/Rubella vaccine, but this is according to
the Uganda report. WHO has done their analysis and… so far, in all research, the vaccine has
never caused Stevenson Johnson syndrome,” Dr Aceng said.
In an earlier interview with URN,
Dr Deogratius Munube, the president of the Pediatric Association of Uganda said
that there is no evidence Stevenson Johnson syndrome can be caused by a