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Measles cases skyrocketed to 5,120 in just a year – DOH

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Wednesday, 6 February 2019 11:28 AM

Measles | Wikimedia Commons

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Health (DOH) urges parents to get their children vaccinated as measles cases in the country has skyrocketed by 547% in just one year.

Based on record by the DOH Epidemiology Bureau, the number of measles infection in the country has risen from 791 cases from January to December 2017 to a staggering 5,120 cases in the same period in 2018.

The increase, the agency reported, was high in the National Capital Region (NCR) with 1,094 cases, an increase by 12,058% from 2017.

The second highest number of individuals confirmed with measles infection was in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) with 645 (33% increase from 2017); and in Region IVA with 621 (4,677% increase from 2017).

These figures cause alarm for the DOH that’s why it encourages the public to help “stop the number from increasing” further and protect the children from measles by availing of the government’s free measles vaccine.

Parents are advised to bring their child to the nearest health center or call DOH hotline 711-1001 to 1002 for further information about the anti-measles immunization program. – Marje Pelayo


DOH blames Dengvaxia controversy for 300% increase in measles cases in PH

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Friday, 30 November 2018 12:00 PM


MANILA, Philippines – Measles cases in the country have already reached to more than 17,000 from January to November this year.

Record shows a staggering increase of 367% as compared to the same period in 2017.

According to the Department of Health (DOH), the increase is due to the public’s lack of trust and confidence in the government’s immunization programs stemming from the Dengvaxia controversy.

“There had been certain regions that had been affected by the continuing Dengvaxia issue, the Dengvaxia controversy…There is a significant drop in the confidence of our people in the immunization program of the DOH from 92% to measly 33% ; ang laki ng bagsak talaga,” said Health Secretary Francisco Duque.

According to the DOH, since the Dengvaxia immunization became a controversy in the country, many Filipinos now fear getting vaccinated.

Filipinos have also avoided even the trusted vaccines which had long been in use and proven effective.

This is also the reason why measles outbreak which resulted in six death cases was recorded in Zamboanga last February.

In October this year, measles cases in Bicol have also increased to 300%.

On Wednesday (November 28), 18 death cases were recorded in Sarangani province bringing the total to 84 in the province alone.

Most of those affected are between the ages of 4 months to 40 years old; majority of them were females.

The DOH already created an investigating team to monitor the measles cases in Sarangani province. The cases were identified to have originated from the B’laan tribe where vaccination is never practiced.

According to the Duque, these areas are also conflict- affected which is the reason why health services cannot easily reach the residents.

“It’s also NPA-infested and so this is really one of the challenges under the universal health care. This is something that we need to prioritize,” Duque said.

Meanwhile, more than 200 children were immunized in the affected areas to prevent them from being infected with measles.

Common signs and symptoms for suspected measles typically include fever, runny nose, cough, red eyes, and sore throat followed by a rash that spread all over the body. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Aiko Miguel)

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DOH to round up communities with low measles immunization

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, 5 April 2018 10:58 AM

FILE PHOTO: A vaccination administered to a student

MANILA, Philippines — Public distrust in the immunization program of the Department of Health (DOH) is one of the reasons Health Secretary Francisco Duque III sees for the outbreak of measles in several towns in the country.

“It has a myriad of reasons but the most common is the fear that the Dengvaxia has spawned,” the health chief said.

“Even if Mindanao is not a recipient of Dengvaxia, parents are saying they have lost trust,” said Duque.

This is why the DOH is planning to go to communities throughout the country with low measles immunization record as well areas that have declared measles outbreak.

These include Negros Oriental, Zamboanga City, Davao City, Davao Region and a barangay in Taguig City.

“We will create a task force for the measles. There is a need for house to house vaccination,” said the health secretary.

In the first quarter of 2018, the number of measles cases in the country has climbed to more than 500.

This is higher than the 16 cases recorded in the same period of 2017.

The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) has the highest number of measles cases, followed by regions XI, XII, IX and the National Capital Region (NCR).

The agency is appealing to the public to have their children vaccinated.

The health secretary called on parents not to fear measles vaccination as it has been already tried and tested.

The DOH also encouraged the public to patronize vaccines against hepatitis and influenza. — Aiko Miguel | UNTV News & Rescue

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WHO warns of soaring rates of measles in Europe

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, 22 February 2018 02:37 AM

FILE PHOTO: World Health Organization Director-General Margaret Chan holds the Global Status Report on Road Safety 2015 during a news conference at the WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, October 19, 2015. REUTERS/DENIS BALIBOUSE

The World Health Organization (WHO) warns of soaring rates of measles in Europe.

The cases increased four-fold, with more than 20,000 people affected and 35 deaths.

Fifteen European region countries, including the UK, had large outbreaks. Measles cases were highest in Romania, Italy, and Ukraine. The UK saw 282 cases in 2017.

The UK recently achieved WHO’s measles elimination status, meaning that for the past few years the number of cases has been low enough to stop the disease circulating around the country.

The overall risk of measles to the UK population is low, but WHO warns that due to ongoing measles outbreaks in Europe, cases in unimmunized individuals and limited onward spread can occur. — Reuters

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