THE Davao City Health Office (CHO) has recorded 16 confirmed cases of measles and 222 suspected cases in 36 barangays in the city.

"We have 222 suspected cases. They have fever, maculopapular rashes, cough, cold, eye redness (conjunctivitis), and other viral symptoms," said Assistant City Health Officer Dr. Marjorie Culas through a text message to Sun.Star Davao yesterday.

The 16 cases were confirmed after the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) in Manila processed their laboratory exams.

The CHO has also informed that only districts of Paquibato and Baguio have not reported any cases of measles.

Culas, on the other hand, explained that some of the people infected with measles may not be from the city.

“There are some of them who are only included in our records because they lived together with their relatives who are residents of the city. But they are actually from neighboring cities or provinces who only went to Davao to be admitted to big hospitals here like in SPMC where they can enjoy free medication,” she said.

The official also said that the first report of measles was recorded on November 2017, and then it started to increase in December 2017.

She said these are from areas where evacuees from war-torn cities stayed. However, she said that it’s hard to speculate that they brought the virus here.

There were also received reports from Mini-forest Health Center near Magsaysay Park.

"They don't have immunization cards to show or some has no history of immunization," she added.

An Outbreak Immunization Response (ORI) last November and December was made to prevent an outbreak or epidemic. They managed to immunize 15 thousand children but 600 refused immunization.

"Maybe they fear vaccination, or maybe it’s the Dengvaxia controversy getting their way. Some parents are not there during the house-to-house round-up," she said.

She added that they will continue their ORI until the end of the month.

She added that they still have stocks of measles vaccine (MMR Vaccine).

Unlike Dengvaxia, the country has been using MMR Vaccine for decades. It’s a guarantee that the vaccine is effective and has no side effects like that of Dengvaxia.