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Health Director confirms Tonga does not use the MMR vaccination MR for babies.

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa ,13/07/2018

The Director of Health – Dr Siale ‘Akauola has confirmed that Tonga does not use the MMR vaccination for mumps, measles and rubella but the MR vaccination only for measles and rubella.

This follows media reports of two infants aged one died in Samoa after they received MMR vaccine.

Director of Health adds the Ministry of Health in Samoa together with international organizations namely World Health Organization – WHO and the UNICEF are currently investigating the cause of death in relation to the MMR vaccination.

He adds this in an unusual incident to occur in the region or even world wide because the medical institutions that provide these vaccines have assured that their products are safe for treatments.

Similar medicines are used in New Zealand, Australia and the Western Countries.

Dr. ‘Akauola adds while the officials are enquiring the incident its significant for everyone to await for the results to be presented accurately because at the moment with the information beforehand it causes confusion and it could affects lives.

Meanwhile, he says the MR vaccination in Tonga is very crucial for the lives of young children because it protects them from measles and rubella.

Before the introduction of MR vaccination program, Dr ‘Akauola says many lives were affected due to the disease with some born with sighting problems even some were born blind and mute.

Years later, the vaccination was introduced and it has helped develop and protect lives, children in particular.

However, Dr ‘Akauola emphasizes that the incident happened in Samoa should be a reminder for the Ministry of Health to pay more attention to their work.

This includes ensuring that the process of vaccinating children are practiced according to proper procedures.

About two thousand children in Tonga are vaccinated annually.

© Radio and Television Tonga News