Saturday, 16 February, 2019

Measles outbreak declared in Manila

Measles can spread easily through coughs and sneezes Measles can spread easily through coughs and sneezes
Ben Pena | 09 February, 2019, 08:09

The DOH also declared a measles outbreak in Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon), Mimaropa (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan) and Bicol.

QUICK-SPREADING VIRUS A father waits for his measles-stricken child to be admitted to the pediatric ward of San Lazaro Hospital in Sta.

In late 2017, French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi, which licensed Dengvaxia, disclosed that the vaccine, in rare cases, could indeed backfire: If children who never had dengue are vaccinated and later become infected, the vaccine may provoke a much more severe form of the illness.

Initially the epidemic was only declared for Metro Manila and Luzon, but today the Department of Health expanded the outbreak area to include other parts of the Philippines. In addition, 861 suspected cases have been reported in the Metro Manila area during the first month of the year.

In 2018, the vaccinations also reached only 60 percent at the height of the dengvaxia scare which Corpin attributes to the rapid rise of measles cases on the same year which reached 28 cases in Cebu City.

Health officials lamented that especially parents refused to have their children vaccinated against measles and other childhood ailments like hepatitis due to fears that they might also die due to complications from the use of Dengvaxia.

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The department recorded 196 cases of measles in Metro Manila from January 1 to February 6 compared to only 20 cases in 2018.

Asked if the President was disappointed with the DoH's efforts to promote the immunization program, Nograles said he did not get the sense of dismay from Duterte during the recent Cabinet meeting. "Supportive measures like building the nutritional status of the sick person and increasing oral rehydration are important measures to increase body resistance and replace lost body fluids caused by coughing, diarrhea, and perspiration", Duque said.

"To the parents, let's not take the health of our children for granted". The move was welcomed by presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo Thursday, even as he acknowledged that Acosta may have scared the public from getting immunized.

Convocar assured parents that the measles vaccine is safe and effective.

The DOH secretary earlier blamed Public Attorney's Office chief Persida Rueda-Acosta for the rise of measles cases, saying her remarks on the anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia have caused "serious damage" to Filipinos' trust in government-issued vaccines.

"I think it might be questioned before the courts somehow", he said.

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