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Gov’t to resume free flu vaccines programme after safety concerns cleared

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Health authorities in South Korea said on Thursday that the country would resume offering free seasonal flu shots in phases, a month after suspending the programme amid safety concerns over mishandled vaccines during storage.

According to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA), the nationwide free flu shot scheme would restart on Tuesday.

KDCA said the vaccines would be administered first to those in the ages between 13 and 18 and would also be given to elderly citizens until the end of the year.

The programme was halted on Sept. 22, after some of the inactivated vaccines were exposed to room temperatures during shipping.

However, the agency said the subsequent quality tests and inspections on the vaccines found no safety problems.

Despite the test results, the agency decided to collect 480,000 doses that could have low potency as part of precautionary measures.

In order to prevent any recurrences, KDCA vowed to strengthen the monitoring of the vaccine distribution process.

South Korea government has provided free flu shots to prevent a potential “twindemic” during winter, as respiratory viruses, including influenza and COVID-19, have nearly identical symptoms, including fever and sore throat.

HLM/

(
Edited By: Hadiza Mohammed/Emmanuel Yashim)
Source: NAN

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