Dengue cases reach 10,718 with 13 deaths in Cordillera

>> Saturday, March 19, 2016

4 o’clock habit urged vs zika, dengue viruses 

By Aileen P. Refuerzo

BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera reported the “highest number of dengue cases in a year” with a total of 10,718 dengue cases with 13 deaths last year  Fifty one percent of the patients were children.
Cordillera Dept. of Health director IV Lakshmi Legaspi Legaspi bared this saying dengue was pervasive last year in many regions including Cordillera.
The increase in the cases was attributed to “high population of the aedes mosquitoes and the abundance of mosquito breeding sites” exacerbated by the El Nino phenomenon.
“This year, another mosquito-borne disease called zika is now spreading in many countries.  This emerging disease is also transmitted by the same aedes mosquitoes that transmit the dengue and chikungunya,” Legaspi said.
The symptoms of zika are similar to those of dengue and chikungunya.  The most common symptoms are fever, rash, joint pain, or conjunctivitis (red eyes), muscle pain and headache. 
Pregnant women were advised to consult with the doctor if they develop a fever, rash, joint pain, or red eyes within two weeks after traveling to a place where zika is prevalent.
In Baaguio Health officials urged residents to observe the “4 O’clock Habit” to reduce mosquitos on a daily basis and keep dengue and zika viruses at bay.
Mayor Mauricio Domogan directed city health officer Dr. Rowena Galpo to head a weekly campaign to search and destroy mosquito breeding sites in the community in keeping with the campaign of the DOH.
Legaspi in a letter to the mayor last Feb. 5 said the most effective way of preventing the mosquito-borne diseases remains to be the elimination of all breeding sites in the homes, workplaces, schools and public places.
“We enjoin everyone to be vigilant. Evvery household should practice the 4 O’clock Habit of mosquito source reduction everyday,” Legaspi said.
Residents were encouraged to embark on a clean-up routine every 4 p.m. by removing all discarded tires, plastic containers, tin cans, bottles and other containers that can accumulate water.  
All useful containers such as drums, pails and water tanks should be tightly covered to prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs, Legaspi added.


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