The Department of Health (DOH) on Saturday reported one confirmed polio case in Nueva Ecija, bringing the total number of polio cases in the country to 17.
The case is a one-year-old boy from Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija.
The patient manifested with fever and sudden onset weakness of the left lower limb.
The case was detected through surveillance of Armed Forced of the Philippines (AFP) cases in the communities done and reported by barangay health workers.
The DOH has asked the assistance of different government agencies and institutions to combat the spread of polio in the country.
The DOH made the request during a meeting conducted at their main office in Manila.
Other agencies and institution that provided commitment during the meeting include the Department of Education (DepEd), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), World Health Organization (WHO) and Philippine Information Agency (PIA).
DOH also reported that environmental samples collected from Butuanon River, Cebu tested positive for the poliovirus as confirmed by the Research Institute of Tropical Medicine.
In response to this development, DOH is closely coordinating with the WHO for an appropriate vaccination response.
DOH is assisting the Cities of Cabanatuan and Mandaue in strengthening their Acute Flaccid Paralysis surveillance capacities, including their identification and reporting mechanisms.
“It is important that we are able to timely detect any acute onset of paralysis in children — especially within our communities. We have evidence that the poliovirus continues to spread. Our aim is to promptly diagnose and treat all possible polio cases,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said.
DOH continues to implement the Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio (SPKP) campaign in the National Capital Region and all regions of Mindanao.
The succeeding SPKP round will run from February 17 – March 1 in all regions of Mindanao and February 24 – March 8 in Metro Manila./Stacy Ang