Gov. Edgar Chatto has ordered a serious fight against the recurring dengue, a killer mosquito bite ailment of no known vaccine already claiming six lives and downing at least 800 in Bohol this year.
Chatto directed the mayors, barangay captains, Provincial Health Office (PHO) and rural health units (RHUs) to intensify the anti-dengue drive province-wide even if only in Sagbayan an outbreak has been declared.
One of the reported six fatalities was in barangay San Antonio, Sagbayan, although the outbreak was recorded in Poblacion following a June-August entomology survey.
A Second District town, Sagbayan has the most number of dengue cases at already 149 since January this year, according to PHO head Dr. Reymoses Cabagnot on Friday.
The governor ordered an intensified information and education dissemination because the best way to manage the dreaded disease, which is recurring yearly without a vaccine to date, is prevent it, much less its spread.
The Department of Health (DOH) has likewise declared dengue outbreak in certain areas in Bulacan, Abra and Pangasinan.
As soon as the sudden upsurge of dengue cases in Sagbayan, a Second District town, was noticed, health authorities conducted active case finding and massive search-destroy of artificial water-holding containers.
Larvicides were applied to areas with stagnant water that could not be drained or covered with soil or sand and misting operation done to eliminate adult mosquito population.
Pesguard chemicals and bed nets were provided while community assemblies were conducted to intensify and sustain the clean-up drive.
Cabagnot said they are now updating the execution of the action program result monitoring every two days as the governor demanded the condition of affected areas focused.
Bohol recorded 773 dengue cases, including four deaths, since January 1 until August 15, this year, according to a summary of reports to the Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (RESU) of the DOH.
The fatal victims of dengue, also known as hemorrhagic fever or â€œbreak-boneâ€ fever, were reported in Dauis, Bilar, Corets and Batuan at one death apiece.
But an ensuing report, dated August 21, from RESU unit head Rennan Cimafranca to DOH Regional Director Jaime BernadasÂ added one to the death toll, this time from Sagbayan.
Barangay Livestock Aide (BALA) Provincial Coordinator Bob Galero reported to the governor one more dengue death involving a 17-year-old female high school student named Ma. Cielito Asoy from Cambansag, San Isidro, also a Second District town.
She was buried just last week, according to the official of BALA, which is a province-wide program under the Office of the Provincial Veterinarian (OPV) and has workers in the barangays of Boholâ€™s 47 towns.
TOP DENGUE TOWNS
Based on the January 1-August 15, 2015 summary submitted to the DOH-7, the PHO identified the 10 localities having most number of dengue cases as Sagbayan at 117; Tagbilaran City, 98; Jagna, 43; Carmen, 38; Dauis, 27; Garcia-Hernandez, 27; Guindulman, 26; Panglao, 25; Tubigon, 25; and Danao; 21.
Bohol-wide, the cases could easily reach to 800 considering Cabagnotâ€™sâ€™ report on Friday that Sagbayanâ€™s cases already climed to 149 from 117.
Tagbularan City topped last year with 148 cases, including two deaths, but Sagbayan was then even not among the top 10.
This yearâ€™s occurrence is 20.23% higher than in the same eight-month period in 2014, during which there were only 644 cases, including three deaths.
According to the DOH-RESU, this yearâ€™s ages of cases ranged from three months to 87 years old, with the males having the higher cases at 53% while, across sexes, most of the affected were those aged 21 and above.
Chatto directed a close coordination in regular entomological surveys to further determine the dengue sensitivity of areas and swift reporting to health and other proper authorities any dengue suspicion.
This is while strictly effecting prevention and control measures like the following: Cover water drums and pails at all times to prevent mosquitoes from breeding; replace water in flower vases once a week; clean all water containers once a week / scrub the sides well to remove sticking mosquito eggs; clean gutters of leaves and debris so that rainwater will not collect as mosquito breeding places; old tires used as roof support should be punctured or cut to avoid water accumulation; and collect and dispose all unusable tin cans, jars, bottles and other items that can collect and hold water.
Transmitted by a day-biting mosquito called aedes aegypti, the dengue is manifested by sudden onset of high fever lasting two to seven days, joint and muscle pain and pain behind the eyes, weakness, skin rashes, nosebleeding when fever starts to subside, abdominal pain, vomiting of coffee-colored matter, and dark stools.
Even if dengue mosquitoes breed in clear water, Rep. Rene Relampagos yesterday echoed sanitation as the first prevention of the dreaded viral disease, which is a concern â€œpersonally sentimentalâ€ to him and the governor.
The congressmanâ€™s youngest child, a boy, was recently suspected of dengue.
Chattoâ€™s sister, the second to the youngest, named Esther Therese died of dengue at age eight.
Her case was, in fact, among the earliest, if not the first, recorded in Bohol although at that time the doctors here had yet appeared baffled by the â€œmysteriousâ€ fatal ailment.
Their youngest herself, Eleonore, was hospitalized along with her sister for similar symptoms but had luckily survived when rushed to a Cebu City hospital where she was finally positively diagnosed of dengue.
Eleonore is now in the United States with her own family. (Ven rebo Arigo)