TOKYO, 12 Feb – RIA Novosti, Ksenia Naka. The lag in vaccination in Japan compared with other countries is associated with a certain procedure for obtaining certification, and in order to promote the Russian vaccine to the Japanese market, Russian pharmaceutical companies will need to enlist the support of a partner in Japan, Akihiro Sato, a popular infectious disease doctor in the country, told RIA Novosti.
The doctor noted that the process of certification of vaccines, not only against coronavirus, but in general, in Japan takes longer than in other countries.
“Of course, Japan lags behind other countries in terms of vaccination rates. The reason for this is that there are usually additional clinical trials within the country (after they have already been conducted abroad). This time, since this is a special case, this stage was eliminated. But it usually takes a year or two, it all depends on the vaccine. This is longer than, for example, in America. Repeated clinical trials are usually carried out because different drugs can act differently on people of different races. Possible side effects or they will be different. Therefore, it is necessary to check how the medicine acts on the representatives of the Asian race, “explained Sato.
In order to launch the certification process for a vaccine in Japan, it is necessary that the company that intends to promote it to the market applies for certification, and the government, after considering it, decides to approve the certification or suggest additional tests.
“(For the distribution of the Russian vaccine) in Japan, it is important that the Russian pharmaceutical company has its own sales channel in Japan. It is necessary to define a business plan, a sales agent and further promote the vaccine,” the doctor said. Thus, the first step that can be taken to promote the vaccine is to find a partner – an interested company in Japan.
Recently, the question has often been raised that there is low confidence in vaccines in Japan. So, according to the research of the English company Ipsos Mori, conducted in December-January in 15 countries among 13 thousand people, in Japan the percentage of confidence in the coronavirus vaccine was the lowest – 17% compared to Brazil – 68%, Britain – 66%, USA – 42% and other countries.
One of the reasons for the mistrust in Japan was the negative experience. In April 2013, the country's Ministry of Health began to actively promote vaccination of girls from 6 to 10 grade against the human papillomavirus, which can help prevent the development of cervical cancer. However, shortly after a noisy media campaign about the revealed facts of side effects – pain, fainting and spasms – the ministry withdrew an active recommendation for vaccination. As a result, the percentage of those receiving the HPV vaccine has dropped from 70% to 1%.
“In Japan, during the vaccination against human papillomavirus (HPV), there was a wave of publications in the media about its side effects. There are many people who pay attention to the side effects of vaccines. I think that the reason for the mistrust is the effect of publications in the media. (In fact) there were few cases of side effects, moreover, about the facts that were discussed in the publications, they later found out that they had nothing to do with vaccination. And in fact, this, too, should have been actively reported. in the media. But the problem is that there were many publications about side effects, and that, in fact, there were no side effects from the vaccine – no one spoke about this. But there was a negative image, “Sato said.
A similar thing happened with the combined MMR vaccine.
“There was talk that the MMR vaccine – a combined vaccine against measles, mumps, rubella – provokes the development of autism. It is now known that this is not the case. The biggest problem is that the transmission of accurate and truthful information was very difficult,” – said the doctor.
The most important thing to do to overcome vaccine mistrust is to provide accurate and accurate information, says Akihiro Sato.