DOH declared measles outbreak in some other areas in Luzon and Visayas

Manila, Philippines - The Department of Health data showed 196 people had contracted measles between 1-19 January, compared to 20 cases reported in the same period last year.

          Photo from: Getty Images

Atleast 50 people-mostly children- are believed to have died from the disease, report said.

The Department of Health (DOH) recently declared an outbreak of highly contagious measles in the National Capital Region (NCR) and Central Luzon. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III made an the announcement appealing to the parents to have children vaccinated against measles as complications could be deadly.

 Authorities identified areas with most number of cases included  Manila, Caloocan, Marikina, Pasig, Navotas, ParaƱaque, Taguig, Pasay and Malabon.

Meanwhile, DOH regional offices recorded 575 cases with 9 deaths in Calabarzon and 441 in Metro Manila with 5 deaths.

Measles or locally known as "tigdas" is a highly contagious respiratory disease caused by a virus that is transferred from person-to-person by sneezing, coughing and close personal contact.

It can be recalled that people are feared of vaccines after the controversy surrounding the anti-dengue vaccine, Dengvaxia.

However, health officials reiterated their appeal to public that the vaccine scare created by Dengvaxia is not the same case of tested vaccines. "Measles is a vaccine preventable disease," He said.

Measles is a highly contagious airborne disease which spreads easily through coughs and sneezes. Initial symptoms usually includes fever, runny nose and inflamed eyes. Few days later, red rash might appear in face or body.

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