The Davao City Health Office (CHO) exceeded the 85 percent target for the whole Mindanao on oral polio vaccine by successfully vaccinating 102.65 percent coverage on children under 5-years-old.

Dr. Julinda Acosta, CHO Technical Division chief, said they increased the local target to 110 percent to make sure that no children will be abandoned in the Mindanaowide “Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio” that started November 25 and will end on Saturday (December 7).

“Since it is Mindanaowide, we don’t only immunize children in Davao City alone. If there are children coming from other cities or municipalities, we also included them during the immunization period,” she added.

Even though they surpassed their target of immunized children, Acosta said the CHO will continue to conduct  its “sweeping and mapping” strategy to ensure that unvaccinated children will have the chance to be given the right vaccine.

She added that about 28 children in the city declined to get immunized due to their religious beliefs.

“Even those who refused to have their children vaccinated, our personnel continue to persuade them to acquire the immunization,” she said.

From their initial target of 186,864 eligible children, Acosta said they have successfully vaccinated a total of 191,807 children as of December 4.

These children were vaccinated in various places in the city; 790 at the checkpoints, 138 at the churches, 980 in malls, and 1,969 in hospitals. The biggest chunk of vaccinated children, however, were completed at the health centers and during their house-to-house vaccination.

The next round of immunization will take place on January 6, 2020 to serve the remaining unvaccinated children. (RJ Espartinez)