MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. urged parents to have their children immunized against measles, rubella and polio.
In a video uploaded on his official Facebook page, Marcos said parents should take advantage of the Department of Health's (DOH) month-long "Chikiting Ligtas" program aimed at protecting their children from the vaccine-preventable diseases.
"Bilang mga magulang, nasa atin ang responsibilidad na proteksyunan ang ating mga anak laban sa sakit. Hangad po nating magkaroon ng ligtas na kapaligiran at malusog na pangangatawan ng bawat batang Pilipino (As parents, it is our responsibility to protect our children from any disease. Our goal is to provide a safe environment and good health for every Filipino child)," Marcos said.
"Kaya ngayong buwan ng Mayo, makiisa po tayo sa kampanya ng Kagawaran ng Kalusugan laban sa tigdas, rubella at polio (That's why on this month of May, let us join the Department of Health's immunization campaign against measles, rubella, and polio)," he added.
The nationwide Chikiting Ligtas 2023 aims to vaccinate at least 95 percent of the total population of children aged 0 to 59 months old against polio and nine to 59 months old against measles and rubella.
Marcos assured the parents that the vaccines against the contagious diseases are "free, safe and effective."
"Libre, ligtas at epektibo ang mga bakunang ito kaya wala po kayong dapat ikabahala. Magtungo lamang po tayo sa pinakamalapit na health center o mga itinalagang vaccination site sa ating barangay (These vaccines are safe, free, and effective so there is nothing to worry about. Just go to the nearest health center or designated vaccination site in your village)," he said.
"Huwag po nating hayaang malagay sa panganib ang ating mga anak dahil sa tigdas, sa rubella, o sa polio. Tiyakin po nating mabakunahan ang mga kabataan sa ilalim ng ating Chikiting Ligtas program (Let us save them from any harm that might be caused by measles, rubella, or polio. Let us vaccinate them under the Chikiting Ligtas program)," Marcos added.
The Philippines ranks second in East Asia and the Pacific Region and fourth in the world in terms of countries with the highest number of children with zero vaccination doses between 2019 and 2021, according to the data from the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund. (PNA)