MASS VACCINATION. The Department of Health (DOH) Eastern Visayas regional office in Palo, Leyte. The DOH on Friday (Dec. 18, 2020) said some 535,655 children in the region would be covered in the mass vaccination against measles-rubella and polio. (PNA file photo)
TACLOBAN CITY – Some 535,655 children in Eastern Visayas would be covered in the mass vaccination against measles-rubella and polio in the country, the Department of Health (DOH) said on Friday.
The month-long supplemental immunization campaign which starts on Feb. 1, 2021 includes children between zero and nine-months and below five years old for measles-rubella and oral polio vaccines, respectively.
Elaine Villarosa, DOH Eastern Visayas national immunization program manager, said the region is part of the second phase of this nationwide campaign including the National Capital Region, Central Luzon, Mimaropa, Calabarzon, Cagayan Valley, Western Visayas, and Central Visayas.
The first phase was conducted in the Mindanao regions and some areas in Luzon, she added.
“This kind of immunization is a booster dose to prevent an impending outbreak in the country. As we all know, health care services in communities have decreased since the start of the coronavirus pandemic that resulted in low coverage in our routine immunization for the past months,” Villarosa said.
This would protect the vulnerable group as borders are gradually opening that would allow more travelers from Luzon and Mindanao to traverse the region, she added.
As part of its strategies to avoid overcrowding and ensure that health protocols against Covid-19 are properly observed, the DOH will conduct the activity in fixed and temporary vaccination posts.
Identified fixed posts in the region are health centers, while the temporary posts manned by mobile vaccination team would be opened in school grounds, community centers, and basketball courts, among others.
“This is not a house-to-house vaccination to protect both children and health workers amid the threat of coronavirus. Infections prevention and control measure would be strictly followed in all vaccination posts,” Villarosa said.
The health department also appealed to village officials to help them enforce the minimum health standards during the activity. (PNA)