Fourteen new measles cases have been added this week to Palawan’s record of 24 on February 12 and the increase is “already alarming,” the Provincial Health Office (PHO) said.

PHO chief Dr. Mary Ann Navarro said as of February 18, the number of measles cases has already gone up to 38 with the town of Coron still leading as the municipality with the highest figure at 18.

She said the increase is disturbing even before the first case was recorded in the province because measles is a highly transmittable respiratory disease that may lead to death.

Navarro reiterated that all barangay and municipal health workers should intensify their monitoring and already conduct house-to-house vaccination to prevent more transmission.

“Dapat talaga maalarma tayo kasi tumaas talaga ngayon. Ang tigdas ay lubhang nakakahawa at kapag nagka-kumplikasyon ‘yan maaring makamatay. Kahit hindi pa kasing dami ng kaso sa ibang lugar ang kaso dito sa atin ay dapat umaksyon na tayo. Pabakunahan na natin ang mga bata,” she said.

Based on the weekly update of the Department of Health (DOH) in MIMAROPA, six cases have been recorded in Puerto Princesa, four in El Nido, four in Bataraza, two in Cuyo, two in Culion and two in Brooke’s Point.

Navarro said only one death was recorded, and hopefully none will be added anymore, she said.

Palawan ranks second in the MIMAROPA region with the highest number of measles cases. Topping the list is Oriental Mindoro with 267 cases.

Navarro said they continue to call on parents to bring their children to local health centers for anti-measles vaccination.

“Kung mahal natin ang anak natin ay pabakunahan natin sila. Dapat sila mismo ang mag-decide na pabakunahan ang mga anak nila. Mahirap mahawa, isasakripisyo n’yo ba ang kaligtasan ng mga anak ninyo? Sana ‘wag natin isara ang ating mga pinto sa mga health workers na tinutulungan tayo,” Navarro said.

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is the chief of correspondents of Palawan News. She covers defense, politics, tourism, health, and sports stories. She loves to travel and explore different foods.