S. Cotabato extends mass polio vaccination
KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato, Dec. 10 (PIA) — In response to the Department of Health’s order to extend the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio until December 13, health officials here are focused on helping local government units that fell short of their respective polio vaccination targets.
Dr. Rogelio Aturdido Jr., provincial health officer II, has also created 4 teams whose mission is to conduct “mop-up operations” to make sure that children missed in the November 25-December 7 operations are given oral polio vaccine.
Genesis Navales, focal person of the National Immunization Program in the province, told local media that she received information from DOH regarding the extension of the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio around 10:00 p.m. on Sunday.
This, after DOH monitored that many local governments in Mindanao fell short of the 95% target coverage of children under 5 years old.
In accordance with the DOH directive, IPHO “will concentrate our operations in LGUs with low turnout,” Dr. Aturdido said.
Based in data from the IPHO, as of December 8, only 92.35% of the 114,774 children 0 to 59 months old in the province have received oral polio vaccine.
LGUs with lowest coverage in the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio are Lake Sebu (84.32%), Tantangan (86.4%), Tampakan, (87.84%), and Polomolok (89.84%).
Meanwhile, four LGUs here have surpassed their targets for the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio, namely: Norala (99.62%), Tboli 99.03%), Sto. Nino (98.01%), and Surallah (95.6%).
“We continue to appeal to parents whose children have not yet received polio vaccine to submit them for vaccination, if possible, not later than December 11,” Dr. Aturdido said.
Aturdido said the delay in the vaccination of some children was due to several reasons such as failure by some doctors to give consent for children under their care, absence of children during the visit of vaccinators, and difficulty to reach some areas as in the case of Lake Sebu.
“Also, LGU Tantangan can’t attain the 95% target because of the discrepancy in their actual population and the target set. Based in their survey, their actual target population is only more 4,000 or about 900 lesser than the target number set,” he explained. Per record, health workers in Tantangan were supposed to give polio vaccines to 5,423 children.
Apart from the continued vaccination in health centers and house-to-house visitations, IPHO has also deployed personnel to conduct rapid coverage assessment to ensure that children who have been missed in the two-week mass polio vaccination are given vaccines. (DED/PIA XII)