A 14–year-old boy who got inoculated with the anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia has died over the weekend, the Public Attorneys Office (PAO) said on Tuesday (July 14).
PAO forensics laboratory director Dr. Erwin Erfe identified the boy as Edwin Jan Bogonot who resides in San Mateo, Rizal.
“Kasama ito sa ipa-file namin kasi ganoon din ang findings namin (We will be filing a criminal complaint on behalf of his family because our findings show he suffered the adverse effects of Dengvaxia),” said Erfe.
Erfe said he led the PAO forensics team in conducting the autopsy of Bogonot on Sunday, July 12, at the request of parents after the boy passed away on Saturday, July 11, at the Philippine Children’s Medical Center in Quezon City.
The forensics expert noted that Bogonot’s death certificate shows the underlying cause of death has been leukemia.
“Hindi ma-explain nung leukemia yung mga findings namin (What we found can’t be explained by leukemia),” said Erfe.
The doctor noted that their autopsy showed that there have been bleedings and enlargement of internal organs which Dengvaxia manufacturer Sanofi Pasteur had publicly stated are among the adverse side effects of the vaccine.
Erfe said Bogonot’s parents also showed his immunization card which indicated that the boy received shots of Dengvaxia on June 28, 2016 and on January 11, 2017.
Bogonot is the 155th Dengvaxia victim the PAO forensics team has autopsied and the second this month which includes Diana Diola, 13.
Pursuant to Department Order No. 792 issued on December 2017 by then Justice Sec. Vitaliano Aguirre II, the PAO has been accepting the request of the families of Dengvaxia victims to assist them in the prosecution those who should be held responsible for the deaths.
The PAO has already filed complaints before the Department of Justice (DOJ) on behalf of the families of 56 Dengvaxia victims and intends to file more complaints for the other families.
So far, the DOJ has approved the filing of charges in court concerning the deaths of 17 children.
Those charged include former health secretary and current Iloilo First District Rep. Janette Garin, former and current officials of the Department of Health (DOH) and executives of Sanofi Pasteur.