CHO vows to cover majority of targeted areas in immunization coverage in Davao City

September 17, 2014 5:46 am 

DAVAO CITY, Sept. 16 –- The City Health Office (CHO) on Tuesday vowed to cover majority of the targeted areas in the city in the immunization coverage of Measles-Rubella and Oral Polio at the end of the month-long campaign despite some challenges experienced by health staff.

Zenaida Guevarra, program coordinator of the CHO, said the city already hit 46.17 percent of the targeted 184,351 total number of infants for MR immunization and 44.97 percent of the targeted 216,411 number of infants for oral polio as of September 12.

The data comes from 11 of the 16 districts of the city because not all districts have updated their reports from the field.

“This is already high considering that the city has the biggest area and population,” Guevarra said, dismissing speculations that the city may have been lax in implementing the nationwide immunization campaign when it lags behind compared with other areas in Davao region.

According to Guevarra, there were challenges experienced by health staff such as traveling to hard-to-reach areas; poor response from the community, including penetrating private subdivisions.

However, Guevarra said the city’s health personnel see to it that after the morning schedule in the health centers, they go on house-to-house visits in the afternoon to make sure infants ages five months and below are immunized.

“We are still halfway of the month. Hopefully we can cover the target areas,” Guevarra said. Guevarra said the far-flung area of Paquibato, for example, already hit 52 percent of the target number of infants; while Barangay D Jacinto area (District D), which has the biggest target, has been covered at 80 percent.

Guevarra said they have counting on the cooperation of the barangay officials and purok leaders for their success in the implementation of the MR and polio immunization.

Guevarra added that the full support of the Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, even making a public all on local television, helped in achieving the high coverage of the immunization.

The Department of Health (DoH) has reported that Davao City was behind schedule in the MR and polio immunization compared to other areas in Davao region with barely reaching 50 percent of the coverage.

DoH regional director Abdullah Dumama said Davao City covered 43 percent for MR coverage and 42 percent in oral polio. He reported that the region coverage hit 48 percent, for MR vaccination and 47 percent for oral polio with District D exceeding 50 percent of the coverage. (PNA)

LAP/LILIAN C. MELLEJOR/LDP/UTB

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