The Communist Party of China is struggling to convince citizens to receive influenza vaccinations to protect them in the upcoming flu season after years of corruption scandals involving faulty, watered-down, or otherwise useless vaccines, the South China Morning Post noted on Monday.
About 30 million flu shots are distributed in China each year. This year, authorities have increased production to ensure that “up to 50 million doses [are] available,” Zhang Hui, deputy director of China’s National Institutes for Food and Drug Control, said late last month. Even with the increase, “the coverage rate would rise only slightly to 3.57 percent,” Zhang cautioned.
“[W]hile China has the capacity to increase flu vaccine supply, public demand has remained low because of a lack of trust, a lack of public awareness, poor access, as well as cost,” Huang Yanzhong, a senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations, told the South China