The circulating Vaccine Derived Polio Virus (cVDPV) continues to be observed in countries with chronic low Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) coverage due to unstable or insecure situations, with pockets of unimmunized children.

For the Philippines, this is due to the Dengvaxia scare in the previous years and religious beliefs of some constituents. “A Poliovirus anywhere is a threat everywhere!  All countries in the world remain at risk of polio until the disease has been completely eradicated,” according to the Department of Health (DOH).

“The best way for us to minimize the risk and consequences of polio infection is to maintain strong population immunity through high vaccination coverage and strong disease surveillance in order to rapidly detect and respond to polio,” DOH said. This has been the rationale of putting up the third round for the “Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio” nationwide.

The pursuits and undertakings in particular are for the City Health Office (CHO) to achieve the 95% target. In the previous round, it had achieved 93.95%.

The aim is that there should be no child left behind for the monovalent OPV vaccination. A dose of it for every child means two drops of immunization or protection, as clearly emphasized in the campaign drive.

Now on its third round, CHO intensifies the immunization drive all over strategic and public places for children below five years old. Posts are available in the malls, Barangay health stations, day care centers, terminals, markets, churches and plazas and parks.

“The campaign to end polio is everyone’s concern by calling all parents and guardians to have the second dose of the vaccine for all children age zero to 59 months old or children below five years old. Those who had it last December and are already 5 years old, can still have it for the second time. There is no overdose of it. Our vaccinators are in the aforementioned posts to cater the sabayang patak kontra polio,” CHO said urging the public’s full support.

This endeavor is scheduled on January 20, 2020 to February 2, 2020 and another round will be in February for the bivalent OPV vaccination, that is to address the type 1 poliovirus infection that are in circulation. A proof to that was the case discovered recently in Basilan and Sabah Malaysia.

Report by: Dr. Jade R. Gales, MD & Grace S. Lingcasan, CHO-NADA