Paranagua, Brazil – July 26, 2016 – Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of Sanofi, announced today that Paraná State has launched the first public dengue immunization program in the Americas, targeting vaccination of 500,000 of the state’s residents this year. In addition, Brazilians can also get access to dengue vaccination in private healthcare clinics around the country.
Paraná State is located in the South of Brazil and is the sixth most densely-populated state with an estimated 10,444,526 residents1; over 85% of whom live in urban settings. In the last few years, dengue incidence in the state has increased three fold from 2013 to 2015. The public program announced today will target individuals living in highly urban centers of the State, where dengue continues to bring significant human and economic burden every year.
“The world finally has a clinical prevention tool against dengue that has been shown to be efficacious in the Brazilian population, as well as endorsed by the WHO,” says, Michele Caputo Neto, Minister of Health for Paraná State. “With our strong disease surveillance and community mobilization infrastructure in Paraná State, we are well-positioned to introduce the first public dengue immunization program in the Americas to significantly reduce our disease burden.”
The safety, efficacy and public health value of Sanofi Pasteur’s dengue vaccine has been independently endorsed by the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) to the World Health Organization (WHO).2 This positive WHO recommendation for use of the vaccine in endemic countries like Brazil as part of integrated dengue prevention efforts is based on extensive clinical documentation for the vaccine involving over 40,000 individuals from 15 countries around the world. In these studies, Dengvaxia® demonstrated consistent safety and efficacy across a diverse ethnic, geographic and socio-economic population.
Dengue continues to represent a growing public health threat for Brazilians with disruptive outbreaks that often paralyze local healthcare systems. In 2015, over 1.6 million Brazilians reported being ill with dengue. Almost 60% of the dengue cases in the country occur in individuals 10 to 39 years of age3, which falls within the approved age indication 9 to 45 years for Dengvaxia® in Brazil. This pre-adolescent to adult population represents a highly mobile and social segment of the community who contribute significantly to spread of the infection.