Agbulos calls for pro-active steps to prevent deaths, diseases in ECs PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 13:17

To prevent more deaths and health complications in the city’s evacuation centers, City Health Officer Dr. Rodelin Agbulos talked with the Internally-Displaced Persons (IDPs) at the Talon-Talon Elementary School evacuation center and advocated for health measures to be practiced there during an information caravan held there Saturday.

“We have already noted the deaths of 95 persons at the Grandstand evacuation center, and thankfully, there have been no health complications in Talon-Talon,” said Dr. Agbulos.

“There are three simple requirements that we have to observe to prevent any sicknesses at the evacuation centers: clean environment, decongestion, and good personal hygiene,” he explained. Dr. Agbulos attributed the deaths in the Grandstand to lack of the three items above.

He encouraged them to maintain the sanitation and cleanliness at the evacuation center, until temporary, and eventually permanent shelters will be provided for them within months.

“Mantene lang kita el cosa kita ta ase ahora. Si limpio el lugar, nohay gayod quien ay muri (Let’s maintain what we are doing here now. If the surroundings are clean, no one will die of health complications),” he appealed to the IDPs.

Moreover, he encouraged pregnant women never to give birth at the evacuation centers – they should proceed directly to the nearest health center and be attended to by medical professionals, and not quack doctors.

“Huwag laging maniwala sa panday o sa albularyo. May mga midwives at nurses tayo, edukado sila at sila ang may kaalaman kung papaano kayo tulungan (Don’t always go to quack doctors. We have midwives and nurses who have the knowledge and capacity on how to take care of you),” he said.

The city health officer also emphasized that dengue cases may be on the rise since the city has experienced rains. “Maintain a clean environment, and if some areas are flooded with water, spray some salt into them so that dengue-carrying mosquitoes will not breed there,” he urged.

Lastly, he said that if ever some of the IDPs would feel slight illnesses and discomfort, they should already get a check-up.

“Our staff at the health center is on stand-by 24 hours, you can come visit anytime. If you ever get sick and feel the need to be admitted to the hospital, get a referral from your camp managers, and come to the Zamboanga City Medical Center. Walang bayad, libre ang gamot (No consultation fee and the medicines are free) including hospitalization,” Dr. Agbulos said.

The information caravan is an endeavor of the Communications Working Group composed of the City Information Office (CIO), International Organization for Migration (IOM), United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN-OCHA), Philippine Information Agency (PIA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and various local, national and international development and humanitarian actors. The caravan’s primary purpose is to engage the IDPs to provide them with their information needs, being a venue for real-time, two-way communication between them and their government. — FPG/DIS/PIA9-ZBST