Fearing a measles outbreak in 2021 in addition to the coronavirus pandemic, the government earlier this month urged parents to get their children vaccinated against certain diseases.
The health department’s immunization drive only completed 67% of its target number this year.
Following the Dengvaxia incident in which some 600 people were inoculated and died just last year, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque noted that parents were reluctant to get their children vaccinated.
He addressed this, saying: “The measles vaccine is one of the oldest, earliest vaccines we have. Why should we expose our children to the possibility of illness if we have a tried and proven vaccine against it?” He added that the vaccine would also be given by the government at no cost.
However, the DOH in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is launching a nationwide immunization program from October 26 to November 25 against measles, rubella and polio.
This will be conducted in Mindanao, Cagayan Valley, Mimaropa, Bicol and the Cordilleras. In February next year, the program will be done in the Visayas region, Metro Manila, Central Luzon and CALABARZON.