94K Mindanao kids immunized vs polio

January 27, 2020

AT least 94,014 children in Mindano were vaccinated on the third round of Sabayang Patak  Kontra Polio for children ages 0-5 years old.

According to Philippine Red Cross, the total numbers of children exceeded the target 60,000 on the seventh day of the third round of Oral Polio Vaccination.

The PRC’s third round of the vaccination program in Mindanao started on Monday and will end on Feb 2. In the National Capital Region it will end on February 7.

“Our target number for the children to be vaccinated this year is 60,000 and as expected, the numbers exceeded anew. PRC wants your children to be safe. Vaccine is the most effective way to prevent polio since there are new cases recorded by the Department of Health,” said PRC Chairman and CEO Richard Gordon.

PRC mobilized 1000 trained volunteers and staff in the mass immunization divided into four-man teams composed of a Leader, Vaccinator, Recorder and a Health Educator/Hygiene Promoter.

To educate the public on the importance of the campaign, PRC is allocating resources despite activity in 3 theaters: Mindanao, Bicol, Visayas and Mimaropa which were affected by Typhoons Tisoy and Ursula, and Taal Operations.

Prior to the launching of the third round, PRC conducted a Polio Outbreak Response—Post Round Meeting and Planning on January 10-11, 2020 in Davao City to review also its accomplishments by consolidating the experiences of the PRC Mindanao Chapters in Oral Polio Vaccine mass vaccine (OPV).

“Formulation of new strategies and interventions during the meeting was timely since we have four new cases of polio,” Gordon announced during the meeting.

The meeting, attended by the Department of Health (DOH) Assistant Secretary for Mindanao, Dr. Abdullah Dumama, officials from World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and PRC Chapter Administrators, resulted to the formulation of new strategies and interventions in the implementation of the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio 3 scheduled on January 20 to February 2, 2020.

Thirteen PRC Mindanao Chapters namely: Zamboanga City, Agusan del Sur, Gingoog City, Davao del Norte, Davao Oriental, Davao del Sur, Davao City, General Santos- Sarangani, Sultan Kudarat, Cotabato, Agusan del Norte, Sulu, and Tawi-tawi participated in the meeting.

To help eradicate poliomyelitis in the country, PRC actively collaborated with the DoH during the two previous Synchronized Oral Polio Vaccine events with the support from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) supported the event.

Last January 16, DoH recorded four more cases of polio in the country which brings the total number to 16 since the disease made a resurgence in the Philippines in September after it was eradicated 19 years ago.

A three-year-old boy from Quezon City is among the four new cases. It is the first confirmed case of polio in NCR aside from other polio cases from Mindanao.