The Department of Health (DOH) on Wednesday has confirmed the fourth polio case in the Philippines since outbreak was declared in September.
“The test conducted by our Research Institute for Tropical Medicine and the National Institute of Infectious Diseases-Japan confirms the fourth polio case in the country,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said in a statement.
Duque said the person who contacted the poliovirus was from Mindanao, but he didn’t specify the age of the victim and where in the region it was found.
On September 14, DOH reported the first case and the patient is a 3-year-old girl from Lanao del Sur. Later on, this was followed by another case from Laguna in a 5-year-old boy.
Recently, the health department also confirmed the third polio case in a 4-year-old girl from Maguindanao.
The agency mentioned it is conducting a polio vaccination campaign in the areas where the third and fourth cases were found.
Meanwhile, the rest of Mindanao is scheduled for the vaccination drives on November 25 to December 8.
The said campaigns includes house-to-house vaccination and DOH ensures that municipal and barangay health units will have adequate polio vaccine supply.
According to Duque, the first round of polio immunization was a success, mentioning that it covered 1.7 million or about 95.4% of children aged 5 below.
“We can defeat polio, but we need the public to trust and actively participate in our immunization programs,” Duque said, encouraging parents to have their children be vaccinated.