Parents urged to ditch vaccine hesitancy amid rising pertussis cases

parents urged to ditch vaccine hesitancy amid rising pertussis cases

Parents urged to ditch vaccine hesitancy amid rising pertussis cases

MANILA, Philippines —  House Deputy Majority Leader and Iloilo 1st Dist. Rep. Jannette Garin is urging parents to have their children inoculated and free themselves from vaccine hesitancy, which she claimed seemed to be the cause of the increasing cases of pertussis (whooping cough) nationwide.

Garin made the call after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 1,477 cases of pertussis from January 1 to April 6, with 63 deaths.

“Bakit sa buong mundo ang Pilipinas lang nagkaroon ng pertussis outbreak? At bakit ‘yung polio bumalik? Bakit noong mga nakaraang taon grabe ang mga namamatay sa measles. This is all because of vaccine hesitancy,” Garin, a doctor and former health secretary, said.

(Why did the Philippines have an outbreak of pertussis? And why did polio come back? Last year, many people also died due to measles. This is all because of vaccine hesitancy.)

“Ngayon, measles outbreak ulit sa ibang panig ng Pilipinas at patuloy na may mga namamatay at yung iba naman ay nagkakaroon permanent injury like encephalopathy and blindness,” Garin added.

(Many people in various parts of the Philippines are dying due to measles others are having permanent injuries like encephalopathy and blindness.)

Pertussis is a respiratory illness caused by Bordetella pertussis bacteria. It causes rapid, violent, and uncontrolled coughing fits, which can go on for up to 10 weeks or more.

According to the DOH, it affects people of all ages but is especially dangerous and even fatal for young children and infants.

To combat the increasing cases in the country, reports said the Philippines expects three million pentavalent or 5-in-1 vaccine doses by June.

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