Inferior Vaccines Scandal happened in China Again – Tragedies to Families

Inferior Vaccines Scandal Happened in China again

Inferior vaccines scandal happened in China again. On February 2011, Xu Yiwen received her second DTP vaccine shot and third polio vaccine shot. A few days after, Xu Yiwen started to have symptoms of fever and convulsions. Her parents received four medical crisis notices in two days. After two month’s medical treatments, she was diagnosed with viral encephalopathy. The doctors told her parents that Xu Yiwen had lost her ability of physical movements. Her brain atrophied and stayed unconscious. After a few major surgeries in two years, the only progress Xu Yiwen made was that she could beat a little drum following her parents’ direction.

“I pray for the miracle to happen to my son. I pray for all the pains being away from my family…If I could travel back to March 16, 2010, I would never let my son get that shot…” Li Bao wrote in his appealing letter. On that day he mentioned in the letter, his son, Li Zhikang, received one flu shot. Li Zhikang felt abnormal after receiving the shot and in a few days, he was sent into the ICU. His family spent over 300,000 yuan on his treatment. However, Li Zhikang still turned vegetative.

Parents protesting in front of health department

Parents protesting in front of health department

Zhang Wen used to be a talented young drum player. After receiving the measles attenuated live vaccine, she became seriously sick. Although she was getting a lot better know, nobody can imagine what she had suffered in the past three years. Because of her illness, Zhang Wen had to give up playing the drum. The expensively imported drum set her parents bought for her was now covered by thick dust.

Dong Zixin was born in the year 2009. She brought lots of pleasures to her family. In the same year, Dong Zixin’s grandma took her to the local clinic for ECM vaccine shot and Rotavirus vaccine. She started to have a fever shortly after receiving the shots. After counseling with several doctors and hospitals, Dong Zixin’s family was finally told that her brain damage was permanent and irreversible. Now, Dong Zixin’s parents are working in a different town, leaving her with her grandma. When grandma had to go out running errands, she let Dong Zixin lying on the table. “She won’t fall because she can’t move at all,” Grandma said. Dong Zixin was in the vegetative state.

Four years ago, one vaccine shot broke Lu Weiwei’s family. Her daughter Lu Jiarun can never stand or talk after receiving the shot. She was also not responding to anything anymore.

There were still plenty of those kinds of stories. All those stories had involved the same keyword: vaccine. As we all know, to protect our children from all the serious or fatal infectious diseases, it was highly suggested to give children vaccines every year. In China, it is even mandatory—children without immunization records won’t be accepted by any schools or daycare centers.

But, how did those medications, which were supposed to save children, hurt children instead?

Inferior Vaccines Produced by Changchun Changsheng

July 15th, 2017, Changchun Changsheng Biotechnology Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as Changchun Changsheng) was exposed for producing counterfeit rabies vaccines. Changchun Changsheng was ordered to stop the production of rabies vaccines.

However, a much more terrifying fact was exposed along with it. Changchun Changsheng was found producing over 250 thousand substandard DTP vaccines. And all those vaccines were almost sold to Shandong Province. There were only 186 shots left in the warehouse.

Inferior Vaccines caused the victim disabled

Inferior Vaccines caused the victim disabled

DTP vaccine is for the prevention of whooping cough, diphtheria, and tetanus. It is mainly for children aged 3 months to 6 years old.
In the evening of July 19th, Changchun Changsheng Biotechnology Corporation released an announcement. It said, its subsidiary, Changchun Changsheng, had received the Administrative Penalty Decision from Jilin Province Food and Drug Administration. It decided three penalties against Changchun Changsheng: 186 pieces of DTP vaccines and 85,8840.00 Yuan illegal income were confiscated. Changsheng was fined 2,580,404.60 yuan, which tripled the value of the produced drugs. The total amount of fines was 3,442,887.60 yuan. The penalty decision pointed out that the behavior of Changchun Changsheng violated the provisions of Article 49, paragraph 1 of the Drug Administration Law of the People’s Republic of China, which prohibits the production and sale of inferior drugs. The investigation of Changchun Changsheng’s violence started on October 27, 2017.

Lots of people questioned that the punishment was too light. It can’t ease the anger of the victims. Which was even more suspicious, even the investigation of Changchun Changsheng started almost a year ago, there were still not any announcements about the investigation result or compensation solutions for the victims.

But what happened to the 250 thousand inferior vaccines which were sold to Shandong Province? A representative of Department of Disease Control of Shandong Province told the media that they were “putting together an announcement regarding this issue.”

Another spokesperson of Shandong Province Food and Drug Administration said, they “had no idea about how many vaccines were left and called back.” Also, they were “not sure about the cities and counties to where the vaccines might be sent and the number of people who might be taken those shots.”

“Shandong is the victim.” The spokesperson concluded her announcement by emphasizing it.

Lawyer Wang Peng didn’t agree with her. Wang Peng uploaded a picture of a notice from Shandong Province Food and Drug Administration. According to this notice, as early as October 31, 2017, the administration had already acknowledged the inferior DTP vaccines. In the notice, it said, “all the inferior DTP vaccines produced by Changchun Changsheng were received by the Department of Disease Control of Shandong Province.” Also, the notice ordered the local Food and Drug Administrations of cities to carefully handle the drugs callback and communications with parents of the patients.”

People asked, why did Shandong try to conceal the truth? Was Changchun Changsheng this powerful that they could manipulate the government and public opinions?

The Kings of Vaccine

“Most people didn’t realize that vaccine can be more profitable than alcohol and tobacco.” A Chinese self-media “Shou Lou Chu” wrote it in its article “Kings of Vaccine”. Once published, with the headline news about inferior vaccines being sold in the market, this article soon started trending in Wechat Moment.

Changsheng CEO Gao Junfang's son and daughter in law showing off their wealth

Changsheng CEO Gao Junfang’s son and daughter in law showing off their wealth

Most people won’t believe that producing and selling vaccines are highly profitable. But numbers don’t lie. As the subsidiary of Changchun Changsheng Biotechnology Corporation, Changchun Changsheng contributed 99% of the net profit. According to the 2017 annual report, Changchun Changsheng’s operating income was 1.539 billion yuan and its net profit was 587 million yuan. In 2017, Changsheng Biotech’s operating income was 1.553 billion yuan and its net profit was 566 million yuan. The gross profit rate of vaccine sale can be as high as 80%. Changchun Changsheng has become the largest hepatitis B vaccine company, the largest influenza vaccine company, the second largest varicella vaccine company, the second largest rabies vaccine companies.

“The vaccines they produced had been injected into your and your children every day.” Shou Lou Chu wrote in his article Kings of Vaccines.
By saying “kings of vaccines”, Shou Lou Chu referred to three major shareholders of Changchun Changsheng, who in fact operated the biotech company. They are Gao Junfang, Han Gangjun, and Du Weimin.

Changchun Changsheng Biotechnology Corporation used to be a state-owned biotech company. And Gao Junfang was the main in-charge. He said that he only made a 2,000 Yuan fixed salary by working for the position. Du Weimin and Han Gangjun used to staff working for health and epidemic prevention stations of Jiangxi and Henan Provinces.

Ten years later, in the 2017 Hurun Report, Du Weimin ranked 559th with a value of 7.3 billion yuan, and the Gao Junfang family ranked 820th with 5.1 billion.

The way they accumulated wealth at such an incredible speed was similar. They all targeted on state-owned vaccine production companies powered by China’s state-owned biological preparation research institutes.

They purchased in the shares at a very low price and took full control of the companies. Then they would obtain multiple vaccine production licenses, which paved for listing.

When Gao Junfang bought Changchun Changsheng, the company’s valuation was 120 million yuan. When it was listed in 2015, the market value of Changchun Changsheng went up to 5.5 billion yuan. When Du Weimin bought in Shenzhen Kangtai in 2008, the company’s valuation was 600 million yuan. On the first day of listing in 2016, the market value of Shenzhen Kangtai reached 13.8 billion yuan.

Gao Junfang turned Changchun Changsheng to his family enterprise: all the major shareholders of Changchun Changsheng were his relatives. Du Weimin and his family obtained Canada green cards. He would soon become a Canada citizen if the counterfeit rabies vaccines incident didn’t happen. In the year 2017, Du Weimin sold all his properties in Canada and moved back to China with his family to once again participate in the Chinese vaccine market.

Why Could Changchun Changsheng Repeatedly Escape Legal Sanctions?

Farmer Zhang Yingshan from Henan Province once filed a lawsuit against Changchun Changsheng. The varicella vaccine his daughter received produced adverse reactions. After three years of litigation, Zhang Yingshan received only 30,000 yuan in compensation.

Zhang Yingshan told the media since his daughter received the varicella vaccine at age 2, she started to have syndromes such as bruises on skin and coma. Zhang Yingshan and his family visited Zhengzhou City and Beijing many times for treatment, prosecution, and petition. He wished to be able to question Changchun Changsheng directly, yet he still didn’t get the compensation he deserved. Now, Zhang Yingshan’s daughter suffered from Immunocompromised and heart diseases. “I had to quit my job and take care of her full time.” Zhang Yingshan said.
Why could Changchun Changsheng repeatedly escape legal sanctions? We probably could find something from the relevant bribery cases.

Recently, Wang Feng, the former head of the Ningling County Epidemic Prevention Station in Shangqiu City, Henan Province, was sentenced to a jail time of 8 years and 3 months for bribery. According to the report of Beijing News, Wang Feng accepted 164,000 Yuan from Wu Yuhai, the salesperson of Changchun Changsheng, for purchasing rabies vaccines and varicella vaccines from them when he worked as the head of local Ningling County Epidemic Prevention Station. Wu Yuhai admitted that he also bribed two other Epidemic Prevention heads in Shangqiu City about the same amount.

In October 2017, Li Chuantao the Lixin County Center for Disease Control and Prevention received a bribe second-instance judgment. Li Chuantao, director of the Lixin County Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Anhui, received rebates for the vaccines and asked for a bribe of nearly one million yuan, which included the vaccine rebate from Changchun Changsheng.

Inferior Vaccines caused death of children

Inferior Vaccines caused death of children

Last December, the judgment against Fan Zhijin, the former vice director, and He Yizhi, the former department manager, of Zhenghe County Disease Control and Prevention County in Fujian Province, showed that Fan Zhijin had accepted the bribery from salesperson Chen from Changchun Changsheng for seven times. He shared the bribery with He Zhiyi every time.

To occupy to market, vaccine sales agents always provided rebates to people from local disease control and prevention center who were responsible for vaccine purchases. The bribery ranged from thousands of yuan to hundreds of thousands of yuan.
After accepting the bribery, the people who were responsible for purchasing vaccines will let the inferior vaccines go into the market. And those “deadly” vaccines, will be injected into innocent people and their children.

According to the annual report of Changchun Changsheng, the research and development cost only took 7% of the whole operating income of the company, which meant it was even lower than the cost of producing a bag of hot pot soup base. One inferior vaccine shot might mean nothing to those biotech companies, those doctors, and hospitals who were bribed by them, or relevant government departments. However, only one shot of the child, it could easily ruin their future lives and their family, even take away their precious lives.

“Selling inferior vaccine is murder.” An expert from Peking University concluded.

Summary
Article Name
Inferior Vaccines Scandal Happened in China Again
Description
Inferior vaccines scandal happened in China again. Changchun Changsheng Biotechnology Co., Ltd. was exposed for producing counterfeit rabies vaccines.
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