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China: Tougher law on vaccine administration will go into effect in December 2019

Author: Xinhua Net (China), Published on: 8 July 2019

“China Focus: China adopts tough law to ensure vaccine safety”, 29 June 2019

China's top legislature… passed a law on vaccine administration, which stipulates the "strictest" management by requiring a whole-process supervision system and toughening penalties on producing and selling fake or substandard vaccines. The law was adopted after the third reading at a bimonthly session of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress… As the country's first legislation dedicated to vaccine management, the new law will go into effect on Dec. 1, 2019.

According to the law, supervision of vaccines will cover the whole process, from vaccine development, production and distribution, to vaccination. Specialized inspection teams of pharmaceutical professionals will be established at the central and provincial levels to conduct the supervision work. An electronic information system will be set up to make all information of vaccines trackable… The records must be retained for at least five years after the expiry of the vaccine, according to the law. To increase the transparency of the industry, vaccine license holders are required to publish vaccine information on their websites in a timely manner…

Aside from strengthening the whole-process supervision, the new law also toughens penalties on the production and sale of fake or substandard vaccines. It stipulates that people whose violations constitute a crime shall bear heavier criminal responsibility in accordance with the law. Meanwhile, the law imposes heavier fines on producers and sellers of defective vaccines. Those producing or selling fake vaccines shall face a fine of 15 to 50 times the value of the illicit products, while substandard vaccine makers or sellers face a fine of 10 to 30 times the value… Production and business operation will be suspended for rectification, and drug registration certificates or even pharmaceutical production licenses can be revoked, it said.

The tough punishments will exert positive impacts on the whole-process supervision of vaccines, said Jiao Hong, head of the National Medical Products Administration. It will further enhance the quality of the country's vaccines and boost the public's confidence on vaccine safety, Jiao said at a press conference held after the five-day legislative session closed…

The law introduces a compensation system for people who suffer adverse events linked to vaccinations. It stipulates that compensation shall be provided in cases of adverse events leading to death, serious disability or organ damage during or after vaccination, or when the possibility of an adverse event cannot be excluded. For mandatory vaccination, the compensation must be paid through local fiscal budgets, while for voluntary vaccination, the vaccine license-holder must shoulder the responsibility…

 

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