The World Health Organisation (WHO) has formally certified Vietnam’s fully-equipped national regulatory system that ensures the safety and efficacy of vaccines produced and used in the country.

Addressing a granting ceremony in Hanoi on June 22, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam said Vietnam is honoured to receive the certification, which is a result of constant efforts by local health workers and scientists over the past 14 years.

Ensuring sufficient provision of vaccines for the national expanded programme on immunisation and joining relevant global activities are important to Vietnam and its population of over 90 million.

He described the reception of the WHO certification as a significant initial step for the health sector, though more efforts are needed to implement scientific research on healthcare and vaccinations, build policies to draw investment capital and promote large-scale vaccine production in domestic and global markets.

The heath sector needs to carefully examine vaccine production and distribution, particularly in underprivileged regions, he noted.

The official took the occasion to thank the WHO, international organisations and business communities for their assistance in pharmaceutical and vaccine production, saying he hopes Vietnamese vaccines will be exported to other countries.

Shin Young-soo, Regional Director of the WHO’s Western Pacific Region, commended Vietnam ’s national regulatory system and the resulting safe and effective vaccines.

The certification is a great achievement for regulators and the Vietnamese people as confirmation that the quality of vaccines in Vietnam meets international standards of production, safety and effectiveness, he said.

Vietnam locally produces 10 out of the 12 vaccines used in the national vaccination programme, which provides vaccinations for 1.7 million newborns annually.

The Southeast Asian country has become the 39th member of the WHO to have a national vaccine management system recognised as meeting international standards.-VNA