PH still ebola-free – DOH PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 13 August 2014 11:53

The Department of Health (DOH) IX reported Monday, August 11, that the Philippines currently remains free from the Ebola virus disease (EVD).

In its situation update and report, the DOH IX stressed that as of the moment, the Philippines is Ebola free, and that, to date, no surveillance protocol nor case management has yet been provided by the DOH Central Office.

However, a coordinating mechanism workshop will be conducted on August 12-15 in Manila, stated the report.

In the meantime, the DOH created and is currently circulating a health promotions advisory addressing commonly asked questions about the Ebola virus as part of its intensified information campaign. It also conducts strict surveillance in airports and sea ports, as well as ensure that all passengers from overseas trips are given health information checklist.

The Ebola virus disease (EVD) is a severe infectious and often fatal disease in humans and non-human primates caused by infection with the Ebola virus. The natural reservoir of the virus is unknown, and it is not always clear how the virus first appears in humans, but infection can occur through contact with an infected animal, or exposure and direct physical contact with body fluids (blood, saliva, stool, urine, sweat, etc.) of an infected person and soiled linens used by a patient.

It can also be spread through contact with objects such as needles that have been contaminated with infected secretions.

Among the signs and symptoms of the virus are: fever, vomiting, diarrhea, sore throat, joint and muscle aches, stomach pain, headache, and measles-like rash. Bleeding may also be seen in some patients.

To prevent infection, the DOH advises avoiding direct contact with body fluids of a person suffering from Ebola. Persons suspected to be suffering from Ebola should be taken to the nearest health unit for immediate medical attention.

On August 9, the World Health Organization declared for Ebola to be considered as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. According to the WHO, the current EVD outbreak in West Africa began in Guinea in December 2013, and now involves transmission in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.

As of August 4, 2014, countries have reported 1,711 cases (1,070 confirmed, 436 probable, 205 suspect), including 932 deaths. — Jasmine Mohammadsali