Big jump in measles cases in Maguindanao

By Lore Mae Andong, ABS-CBN News Central Mindanao

Posted at Sep 04 2014 05:49 PM | Updated as of Sep 05 2014 01:50 AM

MAGUINDANAO -- The Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) Maguindanao recorded 519 measles cases from January up to August 27, 2014.

According to Health Officer Dr. Tahir Sulaik, there were only around 100 cases during the same period last year.

"Nakakabahala ito dahil tumaas siya. Hindi naman sana ganon kataas ito based on previous histories," Sulaik said.

The town of Datu Odin Sinsuat had the most number of cases at 105. This is followed by Shariff Aguak with 81 cases, Parang with 57 cases, and Sultan Kudarat with 34 cases.

Sulaik said some of the residents of these towns believe that measles is merely a part of a child's growth.

These towns are also densely populated, causing the disease to spread faster.

IPHO has also recorded 9 deaths due to measles complications since January.

Sulaik added that they did not fail in reminding the parents to bring their child to the health centers for immunization or avail of the vaccination given by evaluators in different barangays in Maguindanao.

However, there are still some who refuse to do so.

IPHO will continue its advocacy on zero measles in the province as the whole month of September is the measles and polio vaccination following the national government's campaign.

IPHO-Maguindanao launched its measles and polio vaccination campaign at Datu Salibo town Wednesday where all of the 17 barangays were submerged in flood due to the bad weather prevailing in Mindanao.