DOH deploys measles vaccination teams to Metro
With the number of cases of measles in the metropolis on the rise, the Department of Health (DOH) on Monday began its massive vaccination campaign with the deployment of its teams to 17 local government units in Metro Manila.
The DOH in the National Capital Region kicked off its antimeasles campaign at the covered court of Purok Molave in Barangay (village) Addition Hills, Mandaluyong City.
“We will not wait for an epidemic of measles to spread and affect a large number of our children. It must be stopped aggressively so we can prevent large-scale outbreaks that can lead to serious illness and even death,” DOH regional director Eduardo Janairo said in a statement.
The recent hike in the number of cases has prompted health officials in the metropolis to declare measles as a top priority health concern during the last quarter of the year.
The DOH Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit has reported a total of 179 confirmed cases from Jan. 1 to Dec. 10, up by 616 percent compared to the 25 cases registered in the same period in 2012.
Three children were killed: A 9-month-old in Caloocan City, a
4-month-old in Malabon City and a 2-year-old in Muntinlupa City.
Local health officials have already started identifying vulnerable children aged 0-59 months old in their areas to be vaccinated.
“Measles vaccination teams will be deployed [to] 17 local government units in Metro Manila regardless of the number of cases. This is to ensure that virus transmission will be averted. We have an adequate amount of vaccine to provide [to] everyone who needs to be immunized,” Janairo said.
Measles is caused by a virus that easily spreads through coughing, sneezing and even through breathing, especially in enclosed areas where there are affected patients. It is recognizable due to the rashes that spread quickly to cover the face and then the body.
Measles is extremely contagious, and anyone who is exposed to an infected person will surely get the disease unless he or she has been vaccinated or has had measles before, giving them immunity.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.