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PIA Press Release

Isabela City holds kidney, dengue symposium

By Rene V. Carbayas

Isabela, Basilan (Jun 25) -- Kidney care and combating the deadly dengue virus were given prominence for this month of June.

Some 100 constituents representing the different barangays in Isabela, community health workers, and some government agencies participated in the symposium. In the observance of the National Kidney and Dengue Awareness Month, the City Government of Isabela in cooperation with the Department of Health-Center for Health & Development, Zamboanga Peninsula (DOH-CHDZP) conducted the symposium last June 8, 2009.

Taking pride of the city government's efforts to reduce and pre-empt incidence of dengue cases, Isabela City Mayor Cherrylyn Santos-Akbar cited her administration's intensive information and education campaign, especially the massive cleanliness campaign that factor in containing and reduce dengue incidence in the city.

In his situationer and update presentation, Dr. Wilfredo Guevarra confirmed the city's campaigns that contributed to the low incidence of dengue cases and mortality, especially the information and cleanliness campaign conducted at barangay levels as initiated by the present administration.

Mayor Akbar, moreover, cited the initiative of her late husband Congressman Wahab Akbar's rubber industry program that Basilan will be expecting more rains this year. While this is good for the farmers, this also means that more stagnant water will occur—a breeding ground for dengue carrying mosquitoes, she said.

She further encouraged the participants to work with the government in destroying the breeding areas of the mosquitoes, saying that while it is her administration's priority to look into the health of Isabeleños, the people's consciousness in keeping the environment clean and healthy is also very crucial in combating diseases.

This year's theme for Dengue Awareness Month, which is observed from June 5-30, is "To DOH laban sa Dengue." The National Kidney Month is also observed during the whole month of June with the theme "Kidneys are 2: one to care, one to share."

Dr. Ernesto Domingo and Mrs. Purita Climaco, both from the Department of Health-Center for Health and Development Zamboanga Peninsula (DOH-CHDZP) shared a substantial input on kidney functions and diseases.

Dr. Domingo reported that there are some 10,000 new cases of kidney-related diseases occurring every year. And the common of these is the UTI or the Urinary Tract Infection. This number is enough reason for the government to give it special attention, thus the yearly observance to bring to the awareness of people to be concerned about the health of their kidneys. More, importantly the value of sharing one kidney to those who are in dire need.

Mrs. Climaco, herself a recipient of a kidney transplant from her daughter, shared that dialysis only prolongs life and also the disease, but it does not cure. She stressed that once the kidney is severely damaged it is irreversible. And one and perhaps the only life-saving remedy is through a kidney transplant, i.e. given there is a donor and the body will not reject it.

Moreover, treatment of a kidney disease is very expensive, Climaco said. Reports said that it is the No. 10 killer disease in the Philippines.

The government, under the administration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is aggressively conducting information campaign of kidney care, dubbed as REDCOP (REnal Disease COntrol Program). (PIA9-BST) [top]

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