Fake Hepatitis B Vaccines: Here is What You Need to Know
How to Avoid Fake Hepatitis B Vaccines
In a three-week probe the National Drug Authority (NDA) carried out, nine hospitals were found to have administered the fake Hepatitis B vaccines.
Hepatitis B is a deadly virus responsible for fatal liver disease.
It also causes inflammation of the liver.
At least 3.5 million Ugandans are infected with Hepatitis B.
There are more cases of Hepatitis B in Karamoja (23.9%); West Nile (18.5%), and Western region (10.0%).
And those figures could have increased since 2005 when these figures were recorded.
HOW BUSTED FAKE HEPATITIS B VACCINES
“We got our first complaint from Mbarara,” NDA regulation officer Amos Atumanya told reporters at the authority’s offices in Kampala on Tuesday.
This person got the fake labels on Mbarara Street and was able to inform our regional office.”
According to Atumanya, NDA started a probe in Mbarara.
But investigation into other parts of Uganda revealed the problem was bigger than NDA earlier thought.
Unqualified individuals were administering the vaccines camps in Mbale Central Market.
LIST OF HOSPITALS WHERE NDA FOUND FAKE
HEPATITIS B VACCINES
- Sanyu Medical Centre in Katabi, Entebbe
- Kampala Medical Chambers on Buganda Road
- UMC Victoria hospital in Bukoto, Kampala
- Malcom Health Care, in Kisaasi
- Devine Mercy Medical Centre
- Mbarara Community Hospital
- Mbarara City Clinic
- Mayanja Memorial hospital
- Family Doctors’ clinic Ntungamo
10ml vial has batch numbers, manufacturing and expiry dates with a shelf life of three years.
Some of the fake vaccines were found with no manufacturing dates.
Other fake vaccines have four-year expiry date or two instead of three years
HOW TO TELL FAKE HEPATITIS B VACCINES
According to NDA product safety director Hellen Ndagije:
- Hepatitis B vaccine of the Serum brand is available in only two registered pack sizes: 1ml ampoules and 10ml multi-dose vials.
- Only Norvik Enterprises Ltd (located along Bombo Road in Kampala) is approved to import the Serum brand.
- The 1ml pack supplied to private hospitals has a white label with two green bands
- The 10ml pack for government facilities has a white label with two purple bands at the top and bottom parts of the labels, respectively
- Government vaccines bear the words: “Government of Uganda, Not for Sale”
- 10ml vial has batch numbers, manufacturing and expiry dates with a shelf life of three years
- Some of the fake vaccines were found with no manufacturing dates
- Other fake vaccines have four-year expiry date or two instead of three years