The Republic of Panama was certified as free of Rubella and Congenital Rubella, by the World Health Organization and the Pan American Health Organization PAHO / WHO Health, according to a Panama Health Ministry press release Friday (computer translated).

Panama map/CIA
Panama map/CIA

The Minister of Health, Dr. Francisco Javier Terrientes received by Dr. Federico Hernández Pimentel, Representative of PAHO / WHO Panama, Certification bringing to our country, as being free of Rubella.

Panama was one of the first countries in the Region of the Americas to introduce rubella vaccination, as one of the measures for the control of Rubella and Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS).

Given the country’s experience in anti-rubella vaccination component, for over 33 years and the consequent elimination of cases of rubella and CRS ago, we highlight the favorable impact on the epidemiology of these diseases, was due to vaccination of Panama.

We’ve had three major epidemics in which in each control strategies were established; From 1981 to 1982, the country decided to initiate anti rubella vaccination in the group of school girls VI ° and post pregnancy women.

During the second epidemic from 1985 to 1986, the country included in an organized and regulated within the national vaccination implementation of the rubella vaccination aimed at covering the groups listed and adding women of childbearing age.

They were expanded on objects to groups Rubella vaccination, keeping this activity universal and free to date and joining new groups such as food handlers and prisoners, among others.

During the third epidemic in 1992-93 vaccination with MMR to children 15 months and 1-4 years since I had received earlier start in 1998 vaccination Measles, Mumps and Rubella expands (SPR) to 19 adolescents and women of childbearing age.

In 1999 he started vaccination men and women aged 20 to 49 years with SPR; in 2000 it enters the National Scheme SR or MR (measles and rubella) Men and women of 20-49 years in routine programs, conferences and national campaigns.

In 2001 the vaccination campaign work is done for men and women to 49 years, which is incorporated as a routine activity in occupational health programs under the responsibility of each local health unit. In 2003 the national campaign tracking children 1-4 years Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR or MMR) is performed.

From 1984 to date they have been implemented hundred sixty seven million two hundred seventy seven thousand 7,962, 177 doses of vaccine Rubella component with an estimated population of 3,975,404 inhabitants, we can change the behavior of these two diseases due to immunization levels achieved by the tenacity and work ethic of staff working in regional and local, to the integration of rubella surveillance and CRS and compliance with national and international commitments in terms of levels removing these diseases as a public health problem.

The Ministry of Health, as regent health agency in Panama, will continue to strengthen its current vaccination, one of the best in the region, which to date has allowed the eradication of various diseases in the country.