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PIA Press Release
2008/02/14

Anti-dengue campaign strengthened in Iloilo

Iloilo City (14 February) -- With dengue becoming a "year round public health threat," the Department of Health (DOH) will further strengthen its dengue prevention efforts through its national anti-dengue campaign called "TO DOH LABAN SA DENGUE".

The DOH Center for Health Development 6 (CHD 6) in coordination with the Iloilo Provincial Health Office and provincial government is set to launch this anti-dengue campaign on February 21 at the Board Room of the Iloilo Provincial Capitol.

Data from the DOH Central Office Dengue Program Coordinator showed that the number of cases from January to November 2007 has risen to 11.7 percent over the same period last year with 40,000 cases.

On the other hand, the Iloilo Provincial Health Office has recorded 1,252 dengue cases and 12 deaths from January 1 to December 1, 2007.

"Dengue is now a year-round threat because of rising temperatures and the unpredictable weather that brings in the rains in the normally dry and warm months of the year. Because of this phenomenon, there are already many reported dengue cases this early part of 2008. Adding to this is the heightened dengue awareness among the public, which makes them suspicious of any symptom closely associated with dengue and seeking medical attention right away," said Health Secretary Francisco Duque in a DOH press report.

Secretary Duque also cited the importance of the participation and support of the local government officials in the fight against this dreaded disease as he encouraged them to expand their search and destroy operations.

"We cannot be complacent about these things. We understand that it is off-limits to barge into private properties. But we must invoke public safety and health and expand our "search and destroy" operations anywhere that the dengue mosquito can breed and thrive. It is useless for one household to participate in our aggressive sanitation drive and vector control when the house next to them is harboring mosquitoes. In the end, dengue prevention is about community action and we need the local governments to help us with this," added Duque.

There are now four strain of virus, according to DOH, being carried and transmitted by the day biting mosquito aedes aegypti. The presence of these four strains may be attributed to the increased mobility and warmer temperature which makes the vector hyperactive. (PIA) [top]

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