PRC gets int’l award for successful measles outbreak response

September 15, 2019

THE Philippine Red Cross was awarded internationally for its successful response to the measles outbreak that struck the country earlier this year.

The  Measles and Rubella Initiative (M&RI) Champion award was given to the PRC during the annual M&RI Partners Meeting  from Sept. 11 to 12.

The M&RI, a global coalition between the American Red Cross, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, United Nations Foundation, UNICEF, and World Health Organization, recognized PRC for utilizing community and partners to provide strategic work on measles response activities.

These activities include PRC’s three approaches to the measles outbreak -- alleviate the congestion in public hospitals by setting up emergency medical tents, mass vaccination programs in barangay level, and a massive information campaign on the need for and benefits of vaccination.

The annual M&RI partners meeting provided opportunities to share lessons learned, improve coordination, and benefit from new developments in the mission to eliminate measles and rubella globally.

PRC chairman Senator Richard J. Gordon said the award mirrors PRC’s success in countering the measles outbreak, which also resulted in restoring the Filipino people’s trust in vaccination.

“The Red Cross played a crucial role in regaining the public’s trust in vaccination. We are extremely grateful for this award, but we know that the battle against measles is far from over. We commit to advocate for continued vaccination and create dialogue in communities to ensure the welfare of their people is being looked after,” Gordon said.

Attended by some  130 participants from 30 international organizations, Gordon is represented by PRC secretary general Elizabeth Zavalla and Health Service manager Mark Alvin Abrigo.