Editorial: Measles, like dengue, is a community thing

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

THE rainy days are over; we haven’t had real rain since over two weeks ago. Among many things, it means more measles cases.

Department of Health-Davao Director Dr. Abdullah Dumama Jr. earlier warned the public to be on the lookout for measles as the mere infection of one can easily infect 18 others. So far, he said, 14 of 300 suspected cases were already confirmed as measles.

Measles usually infect young children, especially those below five years old; ergo, the most vulnerable.


It is up to the adults, therefore, to be on the lookout, bring a child to the doctor or health center if suspected to have acquired the virus to ensure proper treatment. Common measles may be managed by managing the fever and chills, but there is very little difference between the common measles and the deadlier variants. Thus, it is always best to consult a doctor for proper medication.

Dumama said that the two cases of measles mortality were only brought to the health center after more than a week. One was brought for medical attention after having a fever and showing measles symptoms for ten days, the other after 14 days.

Thus, he urged barangay officials and health workers to keep a keen eye out for children showing symptoms and to bring this to the attention of health authorities.

Of course, parents should also not hesitate to have their children immunized.

While measles is not a vector disease like dengue, its spread can still be contained if the community participates. No one else can see and have an idea of the state of the children in their neighborhood than neighbors. It’s a cause of concern for the whole community especially because measles is a communicable disease that afflicts the most vulnerable.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 05, 2014.


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