Wu reaffirms vaccine safety
Premier Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) yesterday encouraged people who were hesitant about obtaining the locally produced A(H1N1) vaccine to trust in its safety, adding that the government hoped the number of vaccinated would hit 30 percent of the population. Pediatricians at major medical institutions confirmed on Sunday that the number of schoolchildren receiving the vaccine had declined sharply over the past week, primarily amid concerns over the safety of the vaccine after a seven-year-old boy died days after being immunized. The father of the boy, a physician, claims the vaccine was behind his death. After preliminary discussions, however, experts have concluded that the death was unrelated to the vaccine. Saying the death of the boy was regrettable, Wu said he admired the child’s parents for nevertheless encouraging the public to get vaccinated.
Railway marks reopening
Residents of Taitung County will celebrate today the reopening of the Taiwan Railway South Link Line, which had been closed since being damaged by Typhoon Morakot in August. A musical feast mixed with an Aboriginal dance performance has been organized for the grand reopening ceremony at Taitung Railway Station, station director Kao Ming-kuang (高銘光) said yesterday. To mark the event, tickets for the first train to set off from the station and for an express train departing for Kaohsiung City at 12:52pm will be distributed free, Kao said. Minister of Transportation and Communications Mao Chi-kuo (毛治國) will attend the ceremony, during which he will ring a bell to launch the first train. The 98.2km-long South Link Line runs across southern Taiwan, connecting Kaohsiung, Pingtung and Taitung counties.