Measles & Polio Vaccine to be Used as “Dry Run” for COVID Vaccination Rollout

NEGROS ORIENTAL – The Measles-Rubella-Oral Polio Vaccine (MR-OPV) Supplement Immunization Activity (SIA) in Negros Oriental is not in the second phase. The Department of Health (DOH) launch the immunization activity last Monday. According to the Department of Health Chief Dr. Socrates Villamor, this will provide as the “dry run” for COVID Vaccination Rollout in Negros Oriental.

Measles & Polio Vaccine in Negros Oriental

The implementation of the MR-OPV will be a reference as to how the Department of Health will carry out the COVID Vaccination when vaccines are available. Provincial Health Office launched the “dry run” last Monday with a target of 142,955 children who are under 5 years old. The target age group for the measles and polio vaccination will be from 9-59 months old and 0-59 months old; respectively.

Backed by the World Health Organization, the MR-OPV immunization activity will determine the capabilities of Local Government Units (LGUs) in carrying out the COVID-19 Vaccines. Earlier this week, Assistant Provincial Health Officer Dr. Liland Estacion said the Covid-19 vaccine rollout for Negros Oriental is expected in March, not in late February as previously announced.

Villamor hopes that they will be able to immunize at least 95% of the children in the province. Although he admitted some parents are still hesitant to have their children vaccinated for MR-OPV. Negros Oriental had been “measles-free” in 2020 but had a few cases prior to that, Villamor said, as he expressed hope that the province will continue to have zero cases of the disease in the coming years.

Apart from ‘fixed posts’ where the MR-OPV immunization is held, such as health centers, temporary posts like barangay halls and barangay gymnasiums are also utilized for the MR-OPV SIA with emphasis on the observance of the minimum public health protocols,” he said.

There is no house-to-house visit this time to prevent the spread of Covid-19,” he added.

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