Health office asks parents to vaccinate kids vs measles

BACOLOD City – The City Health Office (CHO) here made an urgent appeal to parents on Feb. 7, 2019 to vaccinate their children against measles amid the outbreaks in Metro Manila, Central Visayas, and Eastern Visayas.

Dr. Grace Tan, CHO Environment and Sanitation Division head, said that while 41 suspected cases are being verified by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM), the city remains measles free.

Tan said they are presently conducting surveillance against measles and they requested hospitals, health centers, and private medical clinics in the city to immediately submit their patient’s records if they have fever and rash in order to extract their specimen for submission and examination by the RITM.

Tan also encouraged the health workers to help the CHO in their surveillance.

“We are also encouraging everybody to submit their children, especially those under five years old, for measles immunization,” Tan said.

With measles currently being attributed to the Dengvaxia scare, Tan assured the public that the measles vaccine has been proven safe for more than 10 years.

Tan said parents can bring their kids to health centers in the city every Wednesday for immunization.

The vaccine is free and individuals can also get their measles vaccine at any given day, provided the immunization is conducted as a group.

“Please cooperate to our health workers should they go to a barangay with a confirmed measles case, as they’ll be campaigning house to house and conduct immunizations,” Tan said.

She further warned that measles complications could lead to deaths if the children are not vaccinated.

Yesterday morning, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said they are presently strengthening their surveillance of new measles cases and he has issued an alert to mothers and caregivers to be vigilant.

The Department of Health (DOH) in Western Visayas recorded 104 cases and three deaths this year, compared to 16 cases in 2018.