More than a majority of Manila’s barangays has responded in unison to the call of Senator Dick Gordon to prevent a measles outbreak in the city, which he has considered as “ground zero” where 1,296 measles cases and 18 deaths have been recorded from January 1 to February 9 this year.

Of Manila’s 896 barangay chairmen, some 703 participated and assured support during the dialogue with Gordon, who is also chairman of the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) at the launching of the PRC’s community-based measles control program recently.

Mga kasama, mga lider ng barangay. Kailangan namin ng tulong niyo para mabakunahan ang mga bata. Tulungan niyo kaming ihatid ang tulong ng Philippine Red Cross sa inyong komunidad. Kailangan ng bayan ang malasakit natin.,” the seasoned legislator said during the launching of the PRC’s Community based Measles Immunization Program – Dialogue with the Barangay Chairpersons, which is conducted in cooperation with the Department of Health and local government units.

“Assist us in bringing the help of the Red Cross in your community.”

The veteran lawmaker asked the barangay leaders to work with the Red Cross in identifying and monitoring children who need vaccination in their respective areas of jurisdiction and during the vaccine distribution.

“Barangay leaders must work with the Red Cross in identifying and monitoring children who need vaccination.”

The immunization program will be conducted in two modes – roving and stationary. Under the roving mode, a ten-member team which will include Red Cross volunteers, barangay health workers, and barangay officials, among others, will visit houses and inoculate eligible children.

For the stationary mode, on the other hand, immunization will be pre-arranged either in a school or any suitable venue in the area.

Kailangan nating maitaas ang immunization rate natin sa measles. Lahat tayo labanan natin ang measles… Kung kaya niyong mangampanya sa bahay-bahay, kaya niyo ring mangatok para ipakita ang malasakit natin sa ating mga kababayan sa pamamagitan ng immunization… Alam kayo magkukusang loob, magmamalasakit, magkakapwa-tao. We do not want our children to die!” the senator said.

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