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Press Release/ 30 April 2022

The Department of Health (DOH) Center for Health Development- CALABARZON (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon), together with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), launched its three-month Catch-up vaccination drive against vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs) during the celebration of World Immunization Week (WIW) 2022 at SM Masinag, Antipolo, Rizal on April 28, 2022.

World Immunization Week is celebrated in the last week of April. It aims to highlight the importance of vaccines and promote the use of vaccines to protect people of all ages against disease. 

Countries across the globe commit to raising awareness of the value of vaccines and immunization and ensure that governments obtain the necessary guidance and technical support to implement effective immunization programs.

During the launching of World Immunization Week, Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque said that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of routine vaccinations among infants caused a drastic drop.

“Layunin ng selebrasyon na ito ay iparating sa bawat Juan at Juana ang kahalagahan ng bakuna sa pagpapanatili ng isang malusog at mahabang buhay. Sa ating kampanya ay hihikayatin natin ang lahat ng Filipino na kompletuhin ang bakuna sa bawat yugto ng kanilang buhay mula sa pagkapanganak hanggang sa pagtanda,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III emphasized in his speech during the World Immunization Week Launching held at SM Masinag, Antipolo Rizal on April 28, 2022. 

“Ang mga bata po na ipinanganak nitong pandemya ay nalalagay sa alanganin na magkaroon ng impeksyon at komplikasyon dulot ng VPDs kung sila ay hindi nakatanggap ng mga nararapat na bakuna,” Duque added.

The mass catch-up vaccination drive is simultaneously being done in 38 different locations in the entire country to vaccinate at least 80% of approximately 1.1 million children who have missed out and are yet to receive their routine vaccine.  

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Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque III administers an MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella) vaccine to a child during the launching of the World Immunization Week held at SM Masinag, Antipolo City, on April 28, 2022.

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Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque III administers a tetanus vaccine to a pregnant woman during the World Immunization Week held at SM Masinag, Antipolo City on April 28, 2022. 

The DOH continued to conduct routine immunization services accessible to all Filipino children through catch-up and community-based immunization campaigns. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically restricted the health care services, including routine immunization, resulting in only 65.2% Fully Immunized Child (FIC) coverage in 2020 and 48. 5%lower coverage in 2021. 

The National Vaccination Days for routine and catch-up Immunization, dubbed “Chikiting Bakunation Days,” will be conducted every last Thursday and Friday from April to June. 

The Pentavalent vaccine against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type B; the oral polio vaccine (OPV); and the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) are among the vaccines for administration.

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A mother with her baby filling out the registration form to avail the measles vaccine during the launching of the World Immunization Week held at SM Masinag, Antipolo City, on April 28, 2022.

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Two senior citizens filling out the registration form to avail the Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) during the launching of the World Immunization Week held at SM Masinag, Antipolo City, on April 28, 2022.

Fun activities for children and elderly during WIW 2022 

To make the vaccination more enjoyable for children and senior citizens, DOH CaLaBaRZon, this year’s host for launching the WIW 2022, has organized fun games and activities for the children, pregnant mothers, and senior citizens.

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Zumba dance exercise with the senior citizens (Left) and a special song and ballet performance by the CHD4A, Batangas Medical Center (BatMC), and Antipolo City Health Office (Right) staff during the launching of the World Immunization Week held at SM Masinag, Antipolo City on April 28, 2022.

The World Immunization Week 2022 with the theme: “Magpabakuna na, Long life for all,” calls for a movement to regain empowerment and protection of every pregnant woman, infant, adolescent, and elderly through immunization for a healthier and longer life for all Filipinos.