Global measles cases three times higher than last year – WHO

UNTV News   •   August 29, 2019   •   735

A young patient with measles lying in bed. (Image grabbed from Reuters footage)

The world is backsliding in the fight against measles, which can disable or kill, especially children, with a record number of cases recorded up to August only since 2006 and nearly three times as many cases than in July 2018 at that time, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday (August 30).

The biggest outbreaks of the highly contagious disease — one person with measles can spread it up to 18 non-immunized other people — are raging in the Democratic Republic of Congo (155,460 cases), Madagascar (127,454) and Ukraine (54,246) it said.

Europe has lost ground also, with four countries stripped off their “measles-free” status in 2018 — Albania, Czech Republic, Greece, and Britain, the WHO said.

The United States has recorded 1,215 measles cases across 30 states in its worst outbreak since 1992, federal health officials said on Monday.

Nearly 365,000 cases have been reported globally this year, the highest figure since 2006, according to the U.N. Health Agency, noting that they represent only a fraction of the 6.7 million estimated cases annually.

A vaccine-preventable disease, measles caused an estimated 109,000 deaths in 2017, figures for 2018 won’t be known before November.

Weak health systems, a lack of vaccines in some areas, and complacency towards the disease, leading people to believe that since it has been eliminated there is no need to get vaccinated, are behind the surge, the WHO says.

Trust in vaccines — one of the world’s most effective and widely-used medical products — is highest in poor countries but weaker in wealthier ones where skepticism has allowed outbreaks of diseases such as measles to persist, a global study found in June.

In 53 countries of Europe, 90,000 measles cases were recorded in the first half of this year, more than that for all of 2018, according to the WHO. (REUTERS)

Pilipinas, hindi pa dapat magluwag ng health protocols kahit may bakuna na – WHO

Marje Pelayo   •   March 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Hindi pa inirerekomenda ng World Health Organization (WHO) na magluwag ang Pilipinas ng protocols at restrictions kahit nagsimula na ang vaccine rollout sa bansa.

Ayon kay WHO Country Representative Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe, dapat ay matuto ang bansa sa karanasan ng iba na naunang nagsagawa ng COVID-19 vaccination. Hindi pa rin, aniya, lubos ang proteksyon ng pagkakaroon ng bakuna upang maka-iwas sa sakit.

“Yes. There is the effort for us to roll out the vaccines as quickly as possible, and vaccinate a larger proportion of the population in a very impactful manner according to prioritization that we described,” ayon sa WHO opisyal.

“But that also needs to be the accompanying adherence of the protocol because if we don’t do that, we’ve seen surges in the countries as we roll out the vaccines. So let’s learn for that global experience and not make the same mistake,” dagdag nito.

Samantala, binigyang pansin din ng WHO ang pagkakaroon ng tatlong libong kaso ng COVID-19 kada araw na naitatala sa bansa.

Nguni’t ayon kay Abeyasinghe, hindi maaaring sabihing ito ay dahil sa community transmission na dulot ng umiiral na variants na unang natuklasan sa United Kingdom at South Africa.

“We believe that it’s not entirely being driven by the new variants because the number of cases detected and confirmed as suppose to the number of samples checked limited and so we still believe there is an opportunity to strengthen preventive protocols and ensure that we don’t see a need for continuous rise of transmission within the NCR,” pahayag ni Abeyasinghe.

Muli namang binigyang diin din ng WHO official ang kahalagahan ng bakuna upang mapababa ang mga kaso sa bansa.

Sa ibang bansa aniya gaya ng Israel, nakita ng WHO ang pagbaba ng severe COVID-19 infection cases at maging ng death cases dahil sa pagbabakuna ng kanilang mamamayan.

“We do see the impact of vaccines in countries like Israel where they vaccinated a very high proportion of the eldelry, the co-morbid and of course the healed,” pahayag ng kinatawan ng WHO.

“They are showing more than 90% decline in severe disease and deaths following two doses of vaccination. This is an important lesson for us to learn and probably duplicate in other countries as we roll out the vaccines according to the prioritization,” dagdag nito.

Batay sa assessment ng WHO, tumaas ang bilang ng mga healthcare worker sa Pilipinas na nagpapabakuna dahil may dumating nang ibang vaccine brand.

Nasa 4.5 million doses ng AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines at 117,000 doses ng Pfizer BioNTech ang inaasahang darating sa susunod na buwan mula sa COVAX facility. MNP (sa ulat ni Aiko Miguel)

DOH vaccination activity vs measles, rubella, polio extends until March 7

Aileen Cerrudo   •   March 4, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Health (DOH) has extended the Measles, Rubella, and Oral Polio Vaccine Supplemental Immunization Activity (MR-OPV SIA) until March 7.

The health department said this is in order to reach the target population of 95%.

As of March 1, 2021, the health department reported that of the national target, 83.7% or 4,269,423 have been vaccinated against Measles and Rubella; while 3,939,677 or 82.4% have been vaccinated against Polio.

The extension of the immunization program aims to vaccinate over 800,000 more children in the target regions in the country.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III encourages parents and legal guardians to have their 0-59 month old children vaccinated against vaccine-preventable diseases under the MR-OPV SIA.

“To our parents and guardians, let us retain our confidence in vaccines and put our trust in science. These vaccines are proven safe and effective. Let us protect our children and not deny them the opportunity to grow into healthy individuals, free from vaccine-preventable illnesses,” he said. -AAC

Manila Health Department finishes over 80% measles vaccination in 9 days

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Manila Health Department (MHD) successfully finished over 81.6% of the Measles-Rubella Supplemental Immunization Activity in the City of Manila.

MHD began the vaccination activity on February 1 and based on the latest report, 14,936 children in the city were vaccinated in a span of 9 days.

Manila City Health Officer Dr. Arnold Pangan said the MHD aims to complete the program before the city begins its vaccine rollout for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“We targeted na matapos talaga agad itong measles vaccination para mas makapaghanda rin ang Manila Health Department sa oras na magsimula na tayo sa mass COVID-19 vaccination dito sa Manila,” he said.

He added that the measles vaccination is also helpful for medical frontliners to prepare and familiarize themselves with the city’s vaccination process.

The Manila Public Information Office (MPIO) said the program to vaccinate children against measles is implemented nationwide through coordination between the Department of Health (DOH), World Health Organization (WHO), UNICEF, RELIEF International, Healthy Philippines, and local government units across the country.

Dr. Pangan further stated that the MHD is ready to vaccinate the remaining 25,890 children in the city by next week. AAC

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