Esnara: Preventing measles outbreak

The Magangan Stan

DISASTER is not just about typhoons, earthquakes, landslides and floods.

Measles outbreak, per se, is now our biggest concern.

Last Saturday, February 16, 2019, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council already recorded 115 deaths and more than six thousand nine hundred cases in the entire nation. They also confirmed that majority of the victims are not vaccinated. Quite saddening in a world where prevention is supposed to be prioritized.

Maybe we are alarmed by the news regarding accusations and charges to the concerned implementers of Dengvaxia vaccination. Allegedly, it caused side effects to recipient children prompting most mothers to fear that the vaccine for Measles prevention may cause the same effect. Now, some of them, if not all, has opted to discontinue bringing their child to the health center.

I am not in the medical field, but I know how dangerous measles can be. It is infectious and can be transmitted in a blink of the eye through the air, by coughing, sneezing and similar activities. It causes brain damage and even death in vulnerable children. Some of its symptoms are having fever, dry cough, runny nose, sore throat and sore or red eyes.

We have to mitigate this danger, and we need your help. It’s not about how many vaccine is to be consumed. It’s about preventing loss of lives. We had been doing this before, and we should continue doing it now.

Before the Dengvaxia vaccine surfaced, I have been vaccinated for measles, and today, I am just fine. I’m certain, you were immunized too.

So there is no reason why we should allow this measles outbreak happen again. The measles immunization vaccine should not be doubted, unless declared by the Department of Health. It has been used over centuries with numerous test to ensure its effectivity and safety since 1963.

In fact, the United States of America used these vaccines to make their country measles-virus free in 2000. However, due to travelers and overseas visitors, measles was carried in the USA in 2014 again. Today, measles vaccination is being required before travelling in most parts of the world.

Lucky for us, we did not record a number of death yet in the cordillera administrative region. However, we have cases. The Department of Health is now convincing everyone to continue the measles vaccination of every child. Again, they certified that the measles immunization vaccine is effective thus, we are appealing for your cooperation too. You need to complete your child’s Immunization, especially now that another disease called Japanese Encephalitis is becoming an outbreak. Visit the nearest health center in your barangay or municipality if your children haven’t had the vaccine yet.

I wrote this to solicit your most valuable contribution in our efforts to prevent another disaster in measles outbreak. Your Local Government Unit is acting on the hazards in your communities, and they need your help especially on this one. There are lot more hazards out there, but today, keeping your kids safe is more than enough to prevent possible disaster.


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