DOH notes decline in pertussis, measles-rubella cases nationwide

MANILA (PIA) — The Department of Health (DOH) reported a significant decline in pertussis and measles-rubella cases across the Philippines over the past two weeks, offering a glimmer of hope amid public health efforts to curb these contagious diseases.

From May 12 to May 25, the DOH documented 187 pertussis cases, reflecting a 38 percent decrease from the 301 cases reported in the preceding period from April 28 to May 11. 

Pertussis, commonly known as whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease that can be particularly dangerous for infants and young children.

Similarly, cases of measles-rubella also saw a notable decline. The health department recorded 178 cases from May 12 to May 25, a 37 percent reduction from the 283 cases registered between April 28 and May 11. 

Measles-rubella, caused by the measles virus, can lead to serious complications such as pneumonia, encephalitis, and even death, particularly in young children and those with weakened immune systems.

In the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), the DOH observed a 58 percent drop in measles-rubella cases, with 36 cases reported from May 12 to May 25, down from 86 cases recorded from April 28 to May 11.

The recent decrease in cases contrasts sharply with earlier trends. On May 9, the DOH noted that the number of pertussis and measles-rubella cases in 2024 was significantly higher than in the previous year. 

The health department reported that the incidence of these diseases was “five times higher” compared to the 397 cases recorded during the same period in 2023.

Health officials attribute the decline in cases to intensified vaccination campaigns and heightened public awareness about the importance of immunization. 

The DOH has been working closely with local government units to boost vaccination coverage and ensure that communities, particularly those in remote and underserved areas, have access to life-saving vaccines.

The recent decrease in pertussis and measles-rubella cases, the DOH said, is a positive sign that the Marcos administration’s efforts to promote immunization and protect public health are making an impact.

However, the agency added that it is crucial to remain vigilant and continue the government’s vaccination campaigns to prevent future outbreaks.

The DOH continues to urge parents and guardians to ensure that their children receive the recommended vaccinations on time. Vaccines are a vital tool in preventing the spread of infectious diseases and safeguarding the health of the population.

For more information on the ongoing vaccination efforts and to stay updated on the latest health advisories, the public is encouraged to visit the DOH website: and follow official social media channels. (JMP/PIA-NCR)