THE Department of Health (DOH) in Northern Mindanao is close to reaching its 95-percent immunization target with some 521,403 kids now vaccinated against polio since the mass vaccination started on November 25.
Dr. Elma Oclarit, head of DOH-Northern Mindanao’s family health cluster, said the region has already hit an 89.27-percent immunization coverage as of December 2, the 9th day of the polio immunization outbreak response.
Oclarit said they have deployed rapid coverage assessment teams to go to high-risk areas or areas with low immunization rate such as in conflict-affected communities, remote villages, urban slums, areas with high vaccine hesitancy, and areas with anti-vaccination movement.
A total of 690 kids or their parents, meanwhile, refused the vaccination.
Oclarit said some parents refused to get their children vaccinated because of religious belief while others do not have enough knowledge of the vaccine.
Out of the 80,942 kids eligible for the immunization in Cagayan de Oro, some 75,935 kids have already been immunized or a 93.81 percent rate immunization coverage. However, some 501 kids refused the vaccine.
Of all the cities in the region, Gingoog City has the highest immunization rate (97.71%), followed by Valencia City (94.84%), Ozamis City (94.82%), Cagayan de Oro (93.81%), Iligan City (93.71%), Tangub City (93.24%), Malaybalay City (90.6%), El Salvador City (86.93%), and Oroquieta City (80.03%).
In the regional level, Lanao del Norte has the highest turnout rate (90.15%), followed by Misaimis Occidental (87.04%), Misamis Oriental (86.80%), Bukidnon (85.08%), and Camiguin (80.39%).
Oclarit urged parents to welcome DOH teams going house to house visits. Polio vaccination is also available in health centers, lying-ins, some ports, markets, barangay halls, malls, waiting sheds, checkpoints, among others.