Duque declared that there was also an outbreak in central and southern Luzon and in central and western Visayas.
Children with measles are treated as their parents accompanied them along a hallway inside the pediatric ward of the San Lazaro Hospital in Manila, the Philippines, Feb. 7, 2019.
"We are declaring an outbreak as cases have increased in the past weeks and to strengthen surveillance of new cases and alert mothers and caregivers to be more vigilant", Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque III said.
Initially the epidemic was only declared for Metro Manila and Luzon, but on Thursday the Department of Health expanded the outbreak area to include other parts of the Philippines.
The number of measles cases reported in the region have risen dramatically from 2017-in 2018, the DOH EB recorded 3,646 measles cases in the region against the 351 cases in 2017.
Parents have been reluctant to have their children immunised at government health centres, after complications related to a dengue vaccine, Dengvaxia.
From January 1 to 26, a total of 108 cases of measles with eight deaths were reported to the QC Health Department.
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For the DOH, the regions need to scale up their response against measles and have all children vaccinated.
Previous year under the routine immunization strategy, the coverage reached 54 percent or 113,209 children out of 210,291 target. This led the DOH to suspend its immunisation programme that had begun under then President Benigno Aquino III.
"Nutritional support and oral rehydration are important measures to increase body resistance and replace lost body ﬂuids caused by coughing, diarrhea, and perspiration", Duque added.
The QC Health Department is likewise tracing "active defaulters" or children who have missed their scheduled measles immunization.
To intensify the information drive for measles vaccination, Corpin instructed the city health centers to reach out to the households to bring the vaccines to them.
The justice department filed criminal charges against more than 30 health officials for the deaths of about 100 children which a probe by the Public Attorney's Office had linked to Dengvaxia.
Pupils line up at an immunization center at an elementary school to have free booster shots against diseases like measles, rubella, diphtheria, tetanus and HPV vaccine administered in Dagupan City, Philippines, Aug. 2, 2017. "He was saddened, so he said it should be addressed immediately", Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said. It said 60 had died, all of them children under 4.