In preparation for the rainy season and in observance of Dengue Awareness Month in June, the Cebu Provincial Health Office (PHO) is strengthening its information campaign against dengue.
Dengue is a seasonal disease caused by a bite of an infected female aedes aegypti mosquito. It can be prevented through sanitation and other precautionary measures.
Provincial Epidemiology Surveillance Unit (PESU) Nurse Cyril M. Pangatunan said that the PHO is hopeful that reducing the number of dengue cases in the province can become a realistic goal.
In fact, they recorded 401 dengue cases as of January – May this year, a significant drop from 1,749 in the same period last year. A total of 3,584 cases were recorded in 2013.
From January to May this year, Carcar City has the highest incidence of dengue cases in the province with 48 cases, followed by Balamban with 41 and Minganilla with 39.
“The campaign against dengue is not only a government responsibility. It must be everybody’s concern and should start at home,” said Pangatungan.
Part of PHO’s advocacy is the implementation of the 4S—search and destroy of breeding places, seek early treatment, self-protection, and say no to indiscriminate fogging—against the dengue mosquitoes that are commonly present during day time.
Mosquito misting, on the other hand can be availed from PHO by the cities and municipalities should they need it. It can eliminate breeding sites of dengue-carrier mosquitoes that are thriving in clogged gutters and stagnant waters.
Continuous monitoring of the towns and cities in terms of their dengue situation is another aspect of PHO’s campaign.
“The need to conduct information campaigns in the local government units to mobilize communities to get rid of this disease is an effort that needs cooperation from each individual,” said Pangatungan. (Ana Liza L. Abao, SWU MassCom Intern)