Expanded Program on Immunization or EPI in the Philippines is one important right of a child is to get a complete Immunization. A newborn child or an infant is an alive, human being in his or her earliest stage of life. An infant is still sensitive to the environment accompanying his/her growth process thus, he or she needs health protection.
According to DOH or the Department of Health the Immunization or Vaccination of infants is a medical approach that completely protects a child from developing serious illnesses. A child is required to be given early doses of vaccination at birth for an immediate protection.
Expanded Program on Immunization
In July 1979, the Expanded Program on Immunization in the health government of the Philippines was started with its four strategies – to sustain a 90% FIC (Fully Immunized Child) in all provinces and cities, to be a polio free country, to eliminate measles and to eliminate neonatal tetanus. The routine or the schedule is followed on a regular basis and that should be every Wednesday. So, in all health centers, Wednesday is Immunization Day.
Fully Immunized Children are infants who received one dose of BCG, three doses each of OPV and Pentavalent vaccines and schedules, and one dose of measles vaccine before reaching one year of age. Pneumococcal vaccine price in Philippines is ranging 2000 to 4000 pesos.
Following years since the EPI implementation, there have been reports that tuberculosis, polio, hepa b, and measles in infants have been decreased. In every pregnant woman visiting the health facility, immunization to child after giving birth is being emphasized. During pre-natal visits, mothers are given a Mother and Child book as their guide to a healthy pregnancy and infant care.
The EPI is free for all clients. It is made to be easily accessible especially to the remote areas in the Philippines.