Thursday, 19 September, 2019

Measles outbreak declared in NCR, 196 confirmed cases

The Philippines' Department of Health has declared a measles outbreak in Manila and other regions after recording a sharp increase in the number of cases in January Measles outbreak declared in Philippines
Anna Jefferson | 09 February, 2019, 22:25

Last week, the Department of Health (DOH) declared measles outbreak in four regions in the country due to the increasing number of cases.

A child receives a shot of measles vaccine during the house to house campaign against measles conducted by the Department of Health in an east suburban of Manila, Philippines.

Duque declared that there was also an outbreak in central and southern Luzon and in central and western Visayas.

The Country had recently carried out successfully the largest ever measles vaccination campaign for children across Pakistan.

The three new cases include a woman in her 20s, who came in contact with a measles patient living in northern Taiwan, confirmed as an imported case from Vietnam on January 16, and another two imported cases - one man in his 30s from Haiphong City, Vietnam and a 7-year-old girl from Manila, the Philippines, according to a CDC statement.

DOH Undersecretary Eric Domingo said the DOH has instructed its medical teams to perform necessary measures to keep the measles virus from spreading.

In 2017, French firm Sanofi Pasteur disclosed that the Dengvaxia dengue vaccine posed risks to people, who had not been infected before immunisation. This prompted the DOH to suspend its immunization programme, which was launched by President Benigno Aquino III.

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In the first three quarters of last year (2018), the number of unvaccinated children rose to over 960,000 from some 850,000 a year earlier.

The World Health Organization in November 2018 warned that measles cases globally had jumped more than 30 percent in 2017 compared to the previous year, in part because of children not being vaccinated.

Officials of the the Department of Health in Western Visayas are urging government-run hospitals to dedicate a "measles room". "The [Health] secretary was saying that some of our people are reluctant to undergo immunization by reason of the Dengvaxia scandal. I think, baka ma-question pa 'yan sa korte [perhaps it will be questioned in court] somehow", Nograles told reporters.

Its complications include severe diarrhea, pneumonia, blindness and even death, according to the Health department.

But she reminded parents yesterday that immunity from diseases is "the best inheritance" they could leave their children.

The country's Public Attorney's Office indicted government officials in connection with deaths linked to the vaccine.

Corpin said the MMRV vaccination program only topped 50 percent of the total population in Cebu City. "We all have a role to play to ensure that families are supported in overcoming barriers, and that children complete their vaccines", it said.

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