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Nation

DOH to expand dengue vaccination drive

The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Health (DOH) will expand its dengue immunization program to cover students aged nine and above in public elementary schools in Central Visayas.

Central Visayas ranks fourth among regions with the highest number of dengue cases, Health Secretary Janette Garin said.

“This year’s ASEAN Dengue Day is a significant milestone in our country as we are expanding our dengue vaccination through a school-based approach,” Garin said in a statement issued on Wednesday.

She said the Philippines is the first country to introduce the dengue vaccine through the public health system and in public schools.  

France-based Sanofi manufactures the Dengvaxia vaccine.

The DOH targeted the vaccination of 700,000 public elementary students in Metro Manila, Central Luzon and Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon) when it launched the program in April.  

The inclusion of Central Visayas will bring the total number of targeted beneficiaries to one million.

The DOH has vaccinated  300,087 students as of June 12. Under the program, students will be given three doses with the next two doses administered from October to December and April to June 2017.

The Philippines had the highest incidence of dengue in the Western Pacific Region from 2013 to 2015.

As of June 4, the DOH recorded 49,904 suspected dengue cases nationwide. Calabarzon had 6,887 cases; Central Luzon, 5,141, and Central Visayas, 5,018.

             

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