An 11-year-old boy died barely three hours after he was bitten by a venomous snake believed to be a cobra species locally known as banacon on Monday morning.
The boy, identified as Marlon Lubaton, Jr., a sixth grade student and a resident of Baucan Sur in Balilihan, was bitten in his right leg at around 11 a.m. while he was sweeping the floor inside his family’s house, said Michael Espeleta of the town’s Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (MDRRMO).
Lubaton was still rushed to the Govenor Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital (GCGMH) in Tagbilaran City but was declared dead on arrival.
According to Espeleta, he had to convince Lubaton’s father to allow emergency responders to take the boy to a hospital as the family initially refused medical treatment for the child.
The family was confident that the boy was successfully treated by village healers, said Espeleta.
“Paulion gani unta ko. ‘Uli nalang sir kay OK na ni’ ingon sila. Wa ko mo-sugot… Ingon ko ‘di ko mo-lakaw og di nako dad-on sa hospital kay ga-luya na ning bata og taman.’ Murag patay na pero naa pay pulso,” said Espeleta.
Espeleta said that he was able to convince the family to let them take Lubaton at around 1 p.m., almost an hour after the emergency team arrived to take the boy at past 12 p.m.
He noted that they were told that there was supposedly an anti-venom medicine available at the GCGMH.
The cobra was later found inside the house of the Lobatons’ neighbor. It was captured and killed, said Espeleta.
Earlier, Provincial Health Office (PHO) chief Dr. Reymoses Cabagnot said that snake bite victims should not panic and run so the venom does not circulate faster in the blood stream.
Victims should sit down, force the venom out from the bite area and clean the wound before proceeding to the nearest health center or hospital. (Allen Doydora)