Mass polio vaccination starts in Cotabato, Maguindanao

Hundreds of health workers and volunteers started roaming around public areas here Monday to start early the third round of the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio campaign in this city's 37 villages.

Dr. Meyasser Patadon, city health officer, said with the help of health volunteers, the local government is hoping to improve the vaccination rate to at least 98 percent of children 59 months and below.

No case of polio was recorded yet in the city, Patadon noted.

In Maguindanao, nearly a thousand health workers and volunteers were out on the streets before the break of dawn to immunize children -- some of the 195,065 children aged 59 months old and below in Maguindanao's 36 municipalities, according to Dr. Elizabeth Samama, provincial health chief.

Samama said she hopes no more polio case would be reported in Maguindanao.

Only last week, Samama said seven new cases of polio have been verified and confirmed in the towns of Shariff Saydona Mustapha, Rajah Buayan, Datu Piang, Datu Hofer, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Datu Abdullah Sangki, and Datu Anggal Midtimbang.

Samama appealed to all parents not to deny bakunadors (vaccinators) the chance to immunize their children.

This is halal (approved by Islamic faith), no overdose, no side effects, and the most effective antidote against poliovirus, Samama told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) in a phone interview.

The ongoing massive vaccination schedule will last until February 2.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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