Immunization program in Region 1 now at 44%

Immunization program in Region 1 now at 44%

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – Some 407,932 infants and children up to 59 months old from the four provinces of Ilocos Region have been vaccinated against measles and rubella and given oral polio vaccine as of Nov. 4.

Based on the report of the Department of Health Center for Health and Development Ilocos Region (DOH-CHD-1) Thursday, some 24,887 infants and children have been vaccinated against measles and rubella in Ilocos Sur; 19,225 in Ilocos Norte; 26, 695 in La Union; and 119,357 in Pangasinan, including the chartered city of Dagupan.

For the oral polio vaccine, Ilocos Sur had covered 28,325 infants and children; 31,041 in La Union; 21,594 in Ilocos Norte; and 136,808 in Pangasinan.

“The parents’ confidence in the immunization program has now returned as the DOH continuously conducts information dissemination with the help of other government agencies and the local government units,” DOH-CHD-1 information officer Dr. Rheuel Bobis said in an interview.

Bobis said they continue to assure the parents that the vaccines being used in the immunization program of the government are “proven safe and effective” as these were used for several years ago now by different countries.

“The parents have now realized that the diseases (measles, rubella and polio) we are trying to prevent through the vaccines are the ones that can affect children and can even lead to death,” he added.

Bobis said DOH-CHD-1 continues to encourage parents to have their children vaccinated as there are still some 241,827 infants and children 9 to 59 months old to be vaccinated with measles and rubella; and 287,129 infants and children 0 to 59 months old to be given an oral polio vaccine in the region.

The World Health Organization (WHO) and DOH held the first phase of the measles, rubella and polio vaccination campaign in the Ilocos Region from Oct. 26. It will run until Nov. 25.

“Polio and measles affect future generations. That is why the President (Rodrigo Duterte) allowed us to conduct this campaign in the middle of this pandemic. The campaign is already approved by the Inter-Agency Task Force,” said WHO representative Dr. Bezu Beshir in a recent interview, adding they target to immunize 95 percent of eligible children. Hilda Austria / PNA –