Rotarians, DOH double efforts to keep PH polio-free

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By Stacey Marie Baladya

CEBU CITY, Oct. 23 (PIA) -- The Rotary Club has since been the face of the national campaign to end polio in the Philippines for a long time now.

Through “End Polio Now” campaign, the Rotarians and the Department of Health (DOH) have been in the longest-running campaign to end the virus in the Philippines.

Today, more than ever, the campaign’s goal is needed as the Philippines is threatened by a polio outbreak after 19 years of being free from it, DOH officials said.

With October being an important month for Polio awareness, Rotary District 3860 is supporting many activities in connection with keeping the local community abreast of polio vaccine efforts.

One of these include the Barangay Patak, the simultaneous immunization in various health centers in Cebu City for Polio on Oct. 23.

This mass immunization was done in other provinces under the Rotary District 3860 in the Philippines.

During a press conference with the Area One of Rotary District 3860 in Cebu, Me’Ann Solomon, Rotary International End Polio Now Zone Coordinator, stressed that their group aims to double its efforts in coordinating with DOH on their different programs, activities, and services for the public, particularly in the information dissemination about vaccines and its benefits.

As not all babies aged 5 years old and below are vaccinated with polio immunization, the threat of polio in the country continues to loom.

Dr. Van Philip Baton of DOH-7 urged parents to have their children vaccinated.

For parents who may have lost records of their children for polio vaccination or have forgotten whether or not their children have been given one while they were babies, they are urged to take their children to the nearest health center to be vaccinated.

Polio vaccine will not cause an overdose.

To date, there are only two countries left with cases of polio - Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Rotary clubs in the Philippines are increasing their efforts and getting more and more people involved from localities to help keep the Philippines polio-free.(smb/PIA7)