In a follow-up on the measles epidemic in the Philippines, health officials are now reporting 11,459 measles cases, including 189 fatalities since the beginning of the year though Feb. 20 , an increase of 3,000 cases and 50 deaths in four days.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said, “We are hoping and praying for the measles outbreak to end, but it’s still increasing”. He notes that health officials are working diligently to get the vaccination rate at 95 percent (to achieve herd immunity); however, he is not expecting cases to start dropping until April at the earliest.
In Cavite, the provincial government has declared a state of calamity due to the increasing number of measles cases in the province. In the latest Provincial Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit report provided by the Provincial Information and Community Affairs Division, there are 424 recorded cases of measles from January 1 to February 22, which is 2,550 percent higher compared to last year’s 16 cases for the same period.
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