Tacloban City (January 29)

The Department of Health in Eastern Visayas (DOH-8) called on all health stakeholders to remain vigilant as it expressed concern over the rise of dengue cases in the region.

The DOH-Region 8 records showed that 47 children, ages ranging from 5 to 15 from all over the region, were afflicted with dengue and treated at the Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center (EVRMC) from Jan. 4-19.

Of the 47 dengue fever cases in the region, the Department of Health said that Leyte has the highest number at 25, followed by Biliran province, 17; Samar, 3; and Eastern Samar, 2. The actual dengue cases in the region may even be more since the statistical data obtained by the DOH came only from the EVRMC.

The DOH has yet to receive reports from private hospitals which also have dengue patients. But it was learned that seven children afflicted with dengue were confined at the Divine Word Hospital, also in Tacloban; and at least five school children were hospitalized due to dengue at another Tacloban-based hospital.

In January last year, the DOH recorded 85 dengue cases while it registered 1,009 cases for the whole of 2009. DOH-8 director Dr. Edgardo Gonzaga said Tuesday that 11 children died due to dengue fever.

This means that the number of dengue cases this year may have even decreased. But the health officials and the parents must not be complacent.

Gonzaga urged the public and the local government units not to conduct any fogging operation at this time because it should be done only when there is an unusually high number of dengue cases, just in one area, he stressed. (PIA 8)

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