City health drive goes door-to-door

By: Futch Anthony Inso October 22,2018 - 10:53 PM

MEASLES VACCINATION

The Cebu City Health Department will conduct a door-to-door campaign in the city to ensure that the free measles vaccination program can be availed by a large number of Cebu City residents.

“We will be knocking on your doors because we want our coverage to increase. This is very important for the city especially that now, every month or every two weeks, we are receiving cases (of measles) in Cebu City,” said Dr. Michelle Linsalata, Cebu City Health Department’s Expanded Program on Immunization coordinator, in an interview on Monday.

Linsalata said that they would give free measles and polio vaccines to children ranging from six months old to 59 months old during the campaign, which would start by the end of October until November.

This program is under the “Ligtas Tigdas” Door-to-Door Supplemental Immunization Activity (SIA) of the Department of Health (DOH)-7.

However, she said that they would also need the permission of the parents to vaccinate these children and have them immunized from these diseases.

Based on the monitoring from the Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (RESU), Cebu City ranked 3rd among local government units (LGUs) in Central Visayas with most number of measles recorded at 19.

Dumaguete City in Negros Oriental ranks first with 46 cases of measles recorded.

All in all, the region has recorded 290 cases of measles with one death from January to October 13 this year.

Linsalata said that the low turnout of people availing of the free immunization services at the local health centers was the cause of the sudden surge of measles cases in Cebu City.

She said that this was due to fears that the immunization might not be safe for their children.

“Our cases have increased because in 2017, we’ve only able to cover 76 percent of the total targeted population, while from January up to present, we are still at 40 percent,” she said, adding that in April and May this year, they had already implemented a catch-up vaccination.

Aside from the door-to-door campaign, Linsalata said that they would conduct an orientation to barangay health workers about the SIA program, conduct school-based immunization and forum with teachers as a way to eliminate any misconceptions and fears of the government’s immunization programs.

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