MEASLES VACCINATION CAMPAIGN INTENSIFIED
The Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday said it was escalating its measles vaccination campaign in the country, this time among schoolchildren from Kindergarten to Grade 6, in anticipation of the summer months when cases of measles tend to be on the upswing.
According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, the school-based immunization will employ a selective method, with children who had already received two doses of the measles-containing vaccine (MCV) no longer being vaccinated.
“We are targeting (the vaccination of) our schoolchildren at this time before school closes on April 5 since we have almost finished vaccination (activities) in our health centers,” Duque said in a statement. Duque continued his appeal “to mothers and caregivers of children in Kinder to Grade 6” to have them innoculated against measles using what he described as a “tried and tested vaccine.” “Let us give our children a fighting chance to have a bright future,” the health official said.
According to the DOH, informal settlers or population that are considered mobile because they frequently transfer residences, were also included in the vaccination program. In other regions where there is a sustained and increasing rate of measles virus transmission, health workers vaccinated all eligible children aged 6 to 59 months, regardless of their immunization status, the health department said. Measles is a highly contagious respiratory disease caused by a virus.
It is transferred from person to person by sneezing, coughing and close personal contact. Its symptoms include cough, runny nose, red eyes/conjunctivitis, fever and skin rashes that last for more than three days.