200 thousand children immunized vs polio

Two hundred thousand children were vaccinated during the concerted polio immunization drive spearheaded by the Department of Health and the City Health Office this month.

Out of the 205,507 target, the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio immunized 213,783 children aged 0 months to less than 10 years old, resulting in a 104% coverage for the January 6-12 round 1 immunization drive for the bivalent oral polio vaccine (bOPV).

City Health Officer Dr. Dulce Amor Miravite said this round of the polio immunization drive provided the bOPV, which covers the types 1 and 3 of the polio virus.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are 3 types of wild poliovirus (WPV) – types 1, 2 and 3.

The first outbreak in the country last September was a confirmed case for type 2 which resulted in the first round of the polio vaccination drive with the monovalent OPV (mOPV) from November 25 to December 7, 2019.

On November, a confirmed case for type 1 polio was confirmed in Basilan. This resulted in the round 1 immunization drive for the bivalent OPV this January.

The monovalent OPV is given to children from 0 months to less than 5 years old. The bivalent OPV is given to children from 0 months to 10 years old.

Dr. Miravite said follow-up rounds will be spearheaded for both monovalent and bivalent OPVs.

Round 2 for the monovalent OPV will be from January 20 to February 2.

The next rounds of follow-up for the bivalent OPV will be from February 17 to March 2 (round 2) and from March 23 to April 4 (round 3).

“We are also very thankful to our barangay health workers, volunteers, police, media, even our NGOs, our hospitals, our schools. Everybody should really be involved,” Dr. Miravite said.

Mayor Beng Climaco likewise expressed her gratitude to all offices and agencies involved as well as the cooperation and support of parents and families, and the individual health workers who exerted their utmost effort to reach all eligible children.  (Jasmine Mohammadsali)