Press Release
February 7, 2019

In declaring measles outbreak
Nancy to DOH: Step up efforts to combat measles

In light of the Health department declaring a measles outbreak in several regions in the country, Senator Nancy Binay today urged the Department of Health to step up its efforts to counter "what threatens to be a full-blown epidemic if left unchecked."

"Nakakabahala na ang bilang ng mga kaso ng tigdas. Kung hindi ito mapipigilan, pwedeng maging full-blown epidemic itong tigdas at iba pang communicable diseases," Binay, a member of the Senate Health committee, said.

The department declared a measles outbreak in the Cagayan Valley, CALABARZON, MIMAROPA and Bicol Region, following a similar declaration in the National Capital Region (NCR) and Central Luzon.

The DOH earlier said that more than two million Filipino children are at risk of getting sick with measles due to lack of immunization.

"Kung kinakailangan mag-door-to-door campaign ang mga barangay health workers upang magbakuna at magconduct ng information campaign upang mapigilan ang pagkalat ng sakit, gawin na natin," she added.

In San Lazaro Hospital alone, at least 248 children and 21 adults are being treated for measles, according to its spokesperson. Last Monday, seven deaths were recorded, while last week, nine children died within a single day.

The World Health Organization (WHO) noted that the number of measles cases in the Philippines increased by 367 percent. WHO said that from January to November 2018 alone, 17,298 reported measles cases were reported in the country. The tally for the same period in 2017 was at 3,706 reported measles cases.

Binay said that the DOH should intensify its information campaign on the benefits of the vaccination program.

"The DOH should do everything in its mandate to halt the spread of communicable diseases. Kung kailangan ng karagdagang budget para sa information campaign at related programs, magrequest na po ganito pa lang kaaga ang DOH," Binay said.

She likewise appealed to parents to have their children vaccinated, noting that immunization coverage in 2018 dropped to 40 percent, down from at least 70 percent in the last few years.

"Huwag din po sanang matakot ang mga magulang na pabakunahan ang mga anak nila," she added.

An opinion poll last November showed a sharp drop in the trust in vaccines among Filipinos, with only 32 percent of 1,500 surveyed Filipinos trusting vaccines, down from 93 percent in 2015.

News Latest News Feed