Thursday, 28 February 2013

EXTRA:Dengue in Albay surges by 684%

Dengue-carrying mosquitos under experiment at a medical laboratory. - Websitepic  

LEGAZPI CITY: Health authorities in Albay are on heightened alert following the surge in Dengue cases by over 600% with one death reported during the past two months  of the year, the Albay Provincial Health Office said.

PHO surveillance team reported that 308 people fell ill of the mosquito borne disease from January to Feb 27 this year, 684% higher than the 45 cases reported during the same period last year, Dr. Nathaniel Rempillo, assistant provincial health officer, said.

The first dengue casualty this year was a six-year-old girl from Tabaco City.

Provincial epidemiology data show that among the 15 towns and three cities in Albay, Ligao City had the highest number of cases with 112, followed by Legazpi City with 77 cases, Tabaco City 33, Daraga  and Guinobatan towns with 24 each, and Camalig with 11;

Oas 6, Polangui and Sto. Domingo with 5 each, Manito and Pio Duran with three each, while the towns of Bacacay, Jovellar Libon, Tiwi, and Rapu-Rapu with one each.

Rempillo said of the 15 towns and three cities in Albay only the towns of Malilipot and Malinao had no reported dengue cases.

Rempillo said the rainy days that prevailed since January this year could have triggered  the increasing trend in dengue cases.

He said mosquitos thrive and breed in water-filled containers and flower pots.

Last year, five people died due to dengue while 1,477 people fell ill after being bitten by the dengue-carrying mosquitos.

Meanwhile, the Department of Health (DOH)in Bicol reported that during the period January to Feb 27, this year, at least 522 dengue cases were reported by  various provincial health offices in Bicol with Albay registering 308 cases followed by CamSur with 92, Catanduanes 68,  Sorsogon 27, Masbate 23, and CamNorte with only four cases.

Jaime Guerrero, DOH Bicol public information officer said the agency has dispatched six Provincial Health Teams (PHT) to closely coordinate with local chief executives and local health officers for the clustering of areas with dengue cases and for them to take appropriate intervention to control the surge of the mosquito-borne disease, particularly in villages.

Guerrero said at least three villages in Virac town and a village in Ligao City are being closely monitored.

He dismissed speculations of a dengue outbreak saying that there are no identified parameters yet for the agency to declare an outbreak

Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease with four variant viruses.

Symptoms appear 3-14 days after the infectious bite.

Dengue fever is a febrile illness that affects infants, young children, and adults.

Symptoms range from a mild fever to incapacitating high fever, with severe headache, pain behind the eyes, muscle and joint pain, and rash. – Bicol Mail


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