BEIJING (CHINA DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The head of the Shandong Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has been removed from his duties because of a case of substandard vaccines.
Mr Bi Zhenqiang, the director of the centre, is also the subject of an investigation carried out by the province's discipline and supervisory commissions because he is involved with other activities that violate the law and disciplinary standards.
The announcements were posted on Sunday (Sept 30) on the website of the Shandong Commission for Discipline Inspection and the Shandong Provincial Supervisory Commission.
Seven other Shandong officials have also been held accountable in the case, with five of them dismissed, including the deputy head of the Shandong Health and Family Planning Commission and the deputy head of the Food and Drug Administration.
The scandal involved the production of substandard adsorbed diphtheria-pertussis-tetanus, or ADPT, vaccine for infants manufactured by Changchun Changsheng Bio-tech. The vaccine could not meet the standard of immunity results.
Of the substandard vaccines produced by the company, doses from one batch of 252,600 were all sold within the Shangdong province. Another 247,200 doses from another batch were sold in Shandong and Anhui provinces. The substandard vaccines triggered widespread public outrage.
Changchun Changsheng Bio-tech was fined 2.58 million yuan (S$514,993), and 859,000 yuan in assets from sales of the substandard vaccine were confiscated.
President Xi Jinping had demanded a thorough investigation into the country's latest vaccine scandal and promised severe punishment for those accountable after the vaccine problem was exposed in July.
More than 40 government officials in Jilin province, where Changchun Changsheng Bio-tech is located, including seven at the provincial level, were held accountable in August in the case.