MANILAThe Department of Health (DOH) said Thursday it is monitoring a suspected measles outbreak in Sarangani province, which has reportedly affected 84 persons and resulted in 18 deaths.
In a statement, the DOH explained that the ages of the suspected measles cases ranged from four months to 40 years and majority of them are female.
It added that only 18 of them were physically checked up by a physician, while the rest were based on verbal accounts of relatives and barangay officials.
All of the suspect cases have no history of measles. On Nov. 22, the serum specimen collected from 12, or 20 percent, of these cases were sent to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) for Measles Confirmatory Test, the statement read.
The cases, that belong to the B'laan Tribe, came from sitios Lower Kyugam, Alna, Upper Kyugam, Mahayag, Lino, Alnaob, Datalnay, Kyugam, Mission, Klarak, and Dlandang in Barangay Upper Suyan, Malapatan municipality.
Their common signs and symptoms were fever, runny nose, cough, red eyes, and sore throat, followed by a rash that spread all over the body.
A combined team from the DOH and the health offices of Sarangani and Malapatan on Wednesday conducted massive measles vaccination and treatment of affected residents.
The team was able to vaccinate 49 children aged six months to 12 years with Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) vaccine on the initial deployment, and 246 children more, also with MMR vaccine, during the second deployment. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency