The Department of Health (DOH) confirmed the second case of polio in the country last September 20. It came just one day after officials declared an outbreak of the once-eliminated disease. A previous case was already confirmed in Lanao Del Sur while the poliovirus was detected in water samples from Manila and Davao.
The disease was found in a 5-year-old boy from Laguna. Officials disclosed that he experienced the onset of paralysis on August 25. He has since been discharged from the hospital and is now able to walk. However, he will continue to be monitored in case of residual symptoms.
According to the DOH, the boy had always been “immunocompromised”, implying that he experienced multiple pediatric complications because of a weakened immune system. This may have contributed to his infection of the disease, as it possibly made him more vulnerable to the poliovirus. It is unclear whether or not the boy had received his mandatory polio vaccination or not.
In line with this, the DOH reiterates the importance of vaccination against the virus. “Napakahalaga talaga ng bakuna. We cannot belittle the value of vaccines,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III told CNN Philippines. “Ang mga magulang ay dapat magbalik ang tiwala sa ating immunization program.”
[Vaccines are really important. We cannot belittle the value of vaccines. Parents should trust our immunization program.]
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