AEFI and the pentavalent vaccine: looking for a composite picture

On May 4, 2013, the ministry of health of VietNam suspended Quinvaxem, the pentavalent combination used in that country, after it had caused 12 deaths and nine non-fatal serious adverse events (3). On investigating the reactions caused by the vaccine, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported that the nine non-fatal cases could correspond to known vaccine reactions, but the fatal cases were not related to the use of the vaccine. “Quinvaxem was prequalified by WHO … no fatal adverse event following immunisation (AEFI) has ever been associated with this vaccine,” the report asserts, wrongly.