By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

Philippines health officials reported today on three additional polio cases in the southern island of Mindanao.


All three cases were admitted to the Cotabato Regional Medical Center. The first case is a two year-old female from Maguindanao who presented with fever and weakness in both legs. The second case is a one year-old male from Cotabato City with fever, cough, and weakness in both legs. The third case is a four year-old female from North Cotabato showing fever, weakness of the right leg, neck, and facial muscles.

The first two cases were unvaccinated with the polio vaccine, while the third received incomplete doses.

This brings the total cases reported to seven. 

“It is unacceptable that more children are falling victim to this vaccine-preventable disease. We are more determined than ever to make sure that no child shall be missed during the next round of the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio in Metro Manila and Mindanao,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III declared. 

“We should not be satisfied with our children receiving only 1 or 2 doses of the polio vaccine. Let us ensure that they receive the complete doses of the vaccine to fully protect them from Polio,” the Health Chief added. 

The Department of Health (DOH) vaccinated 16,664 children 0-59 months old in Lambayong (Sultan Kudarat province), Datu Piang, and Datu Paglas (Maguindanao province) on 4-8 November, 95% of the target.

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After the successful round of synchronized polio vaccination campaigns on 14-27 October, where 1,628,717 children 0-59 months old were vaccinated, preparations are currently on going for the upcoming round on 25 November-7 December in NCR using bivalent OPV against poliovirus type 1 and 3 (targeting almost 1.3 million children under 5) and the 6 regions of Mindanao using monovalent OPV against poliovirus type 2 (over 3.1 million children under 5). The second batch of 1,206,000 doses of mOPV2 is estimated to arrive in the country on 25 November.

“We are reiterating to all parents and caregivers to have their 0-59 months children immunized with the polio vaccine from November 25 to December 7,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III concluded.