DOH extends measles immunization drive by 2 weeks

MANILA The Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday said it is extending for two weeks its National Immunization Supplemental Activity to protect more children ages 6 to 59 months against the measles outbreak.

Our catch up vaccination program is on-going especially in the National Capital Region (NCR),DOH Undersecretary Enrique Domingo said in an interview with the media.

Domingo said that in the Mindanao area, he received reports that the target was nearly reached as of this time.

He said that the extension was unanimously agreed upon by DOH Executive Committee (Execom) members.

One reason for the extension is due to the refusal of some parents to have their children vaccinated on measles.

It is so sad that the number one reason was still parents' refusal that is why our catch-up figure is low in NCR. On the ground, reports reveal that the health workers are finding hard time to explain to parents the need to vaccinate their children," he said.

He said that before, it is easy to get the nod of parents, now it takes time to convince and let them understand the benefits of anti-measles vaccine.

"So we extended (the immunization activity)," he said.

As of June 15, from the NCR target of 1,408,845, the accomplishment rate was only at 24.24 percent.

For Mindanao, from the target of 2,796,673, accomplishment rate was 68.98 percent.

Supplemental immunization in NCR started on April 25 while In Mindanao, it started last May 9.

The supplemental immunization was conducted to prevent the further onset of outbreaks experienced in some areas in the country. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency