DOH 7 hits only 72 percent of measles, polio vax target; nationwide vax drive extended until June 15
CEBU CITY, Philippines – The Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH 7) immunized about 520,000 children ages nine to 59 months old against measles as of June 1, 2023, under its “Chikiting Ligtas 2023” catch-up immunization campaign.
However, this is just 72.39 percent of its target eligible population for measles vaccination, as the department targets to vaccinate 95 percent of the 717,405 children eligible for the measles-rubella vaccine in the region.
Based on its latest data, DOH 7 inoculated a total of 519,313 children ages nine to 59 months old as of June 1, 2023.
Of the number, the majority, or 217, 407 are from Cebu City, which also has the highest target population for measles vaccination at 311,267.
The DOH 7 continues to encourage parents to protect their children from vaccine-preventable diseases by participating in the national catch-up immunization campaign of the government, which has been extended for another 15 days or until June 15.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines measles as a highly contagious viral disease that “remains an important cause of death among young children globally, despite the availability of a safe and effective vaccine.”
Meanwhile, the DOH 7 also vaccinated 267,745 children ages zero to 59 months with oral polio vaccine (OPV), as of June 1.
The number is 33.07 percent of the 809,531 eligible population for OPV.
Of the 267,745 children who received OPV, 78,785 are from Cebu City; 42,592 are from Negros Oriental, 41,155 are from Cebu Province; 39,613 are from Lapu-Lapu City; 32,611 are from Mandaue City; 27,105 are from Bohol, and 5,884 are from Siquijor, DOH 7 said.
The OPV, according to WHO, produces antibodies in the blood to all three types of poliovirus “and in the event of infection, this protects the individual against polio paralysis by preventing the spread of poliovirus to the nervous system.” /rcg
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