Pakistanis advised to avoid non-essential travel to Philippines after Measles Outbreak

09 February, 2019, 08:08 | Author: Sherman Richardson
  • The Philippines fights the outbreak of measles in the capital region

An outbreak of measles has been declared in Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Western Visayas, and Central Visayas, which came following a dip in immunization coverage a year ago following the controversy on anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia.

Children with measles are treated as their parents accompanied them along a hallway inside the pediatric ward of the San Lazaro Hospital in Manila, the Philippines, Feb. 7, 2019.

Duque said health officials were "very frustrated" with the outbreak despite their warnings that the "Dengvaxia scare", which he had blamed on the campaign against the dengue vaccine led by Public Attorney's Office chief Persida Acosta, would lower confidence in vaccines.

Cruz, Manila. The Department of Health has declared a measles outbreak in Metro Manila and in four other regions.

The number of measles cases rose from 791 in 2017 to 5,120 in 2018.

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He attributed the deaths to "low vaccine coverage because of the Dengvaxia scare". "We are now looking at big outbreak and hundreds, even thousands, are expected to die every year if this trend continues", she said, urging parents to vaccinate their children.

Based on validated data, Duque said 575 cases including nine deaths have been recorded in Calabarzon, a figure that represented a 2,538 increase over the measles cases reported a year ago. This prompted the DOH to suspend its immunization programme, which was launched by President Benigno Aquino III. "Supportive measures like building the nutritional status of the sick person and increasing oral rehydration are important measures to increase body resistance and replace lost body fluids caused by coughing, diarrhea, and perspiration", Duque said.

The health department recently said that 830,000 school children aged 9 and older were given the drug, a revision from an earlier estimate of 740,000.

Amid the outbreak, the House of Representatives also on Friday approved on second reading an act expanding the coverage of the mandatory basic immunization program and providing a system in the determination of other types of vaccine-preventable diseases, amending Republic Act (RA) 10152 or the "Mandatory Infants and Children Health Immunization Act of 2011".

To intensify the information drive for measles vaccination, Corpin instructed the city health centers to reach out to the households to bring the vaccines to them. "He was saddened, so he said it should be addressed immediately", Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said. "I can not be blaming her for that", he said. All they have to do is just have their children checked.

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