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Some 185,186 children aged 1-59 months old received the Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) at the close of the Davao City government’s anti-polio vaccination campaign on Sunday.

Although the number did not reach 100 percent target, Assistant City Health Officer Dr. Marjorie Culas said the achievement was more than the 95% accomplishment required by the Department of Health (DoH) for the immunization of targeted children.

“According to the DOH and WHO (World Health Organization), 95 percent will achieve herd immunity. Herd immunity refers to the resistance to infection when a high proportion of children or the target population get immunized,” she said.

Culas said the CHO has administered the OPV to 185,186 children, or 99.1 percent of the total target.

“We had difficulties in the downtown areas because we have a high target but in reality, there are no longer children aged from 0-59 months (in these areas). Some already migrated or transferred to a different barangay,” she said.

“The number of children that we target was just a projected one. It is not the actual number of children (in the city), so we can say that our 99.1 percent coverage is already a success,” Culas added.

Culas said the CHO also expected the same success during the second and third phases of the immunization in November and December this year.

The massive polio vaccination in the Philippines was triggered by the discovery of at least two cases, years after the virus had been declared extinct in the country.

Further tests showed that the Davao River had traces of the poliovirus. CIO