CHO sets citywide cleanup tomorrow PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 11 May 2012 13:22

In a bid to prevent further rise in the number of dengue cases, the City Health Office has scheduled a massive and simultaneous citywide clean up drive tomorrow, Saturday (May 11) and has stepped up the implementation of other anti-dengue measures.

City Health Officer Dr. Rodel Agbulos appealed to all barangay officials, volunteers and individual households to support and cooperate in the effort otherwise everything will be just for naught.

Mayor Celso Lobregat Wednesday declared a dengue outbreak in Zamboanga in the wake of rising incidences of the mosquito-borne disease which have reached 774 cases with 9 fatalities from January 1 to April 30.

The city government is set to release P553, 000 for the implementation of anti-dengue measures specifically for the purchase of larvicides and other chemicals to be used in the campaign. The amount will be taken from emergency funds.

Dengue is a mosquito-borne and infectious disease that is manifested initially with fever. The dengue carrier mosquito, called aedes aegypti, is a day-biting mosquito which lays eggs in clear and stagnant water found in flower vases, cans, rain barrels, old rubber tires and many others.

“The basic and primary thing to do in cases like this is the cleanup and we are now in the state of preparing our plan of action,” the City Health Officer said during a press briefing Wednesday where Mayor Lobregat declared the outbreak.

Yesterday morning, Agbulos met with representatives from different health facilities to include Zamboanga City Medical Center and private hospitals and other health personnel to discuss about the possibility of setting up a fast lane for dengue fever in hospitals.

The Department of Health, according to Agbulos has also pledged support to the intensified anti-dengue drive in the City.

The CHO will target the top 20 barangays with the most number of dengue cases including those barangays where rivers and cemeteries are located.

“We appeal to the media and our barangay officials to help us in this campaign,” Dr. Agbulos said stressing anew that the city government through the CHO cannot succeed in the effort without the all out support of the communities and the individual households.

The clean up drive has to be massive and simultaneous to ensure elimination of breeding sites of dengue carrier mosquitoes. The effects, however, will not be immediate but after at least after a week, Agbulos said.

He said the abrupt change in weather is one of the reasons for the emergence of dengue carrier mosquitoes.  All other cities are affected by the dengue disease and that no amount of campaigns to decrease the number of cases, the same cannot be controlled.

“As early as January we have been going out to the barangays and doing our advocacy campaigns but no matter how much efforts we exert if the people themselves do not move and act, all these will be useless”, he stressed. “It is the work of the community or the people, the move should come from them”.

Meanwhile, the city health officer said the city government has acquired dengue laboratory kits which can determine if a patient has dengue after 3 days of continuous fever.

High grade fever, headache, exhaustion, severe joint and muscle pain, swollen glands and rashes are characteristics of dengue.

On the other hand, the DOH through Dr. Joshua Brillantes revealed that there are four types of dengue strains or virus in the city and that specimens have already been sent to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) to determine the types or classifications.

“We need not be threatened or alarmed by the disease, as long as we do our part to prevent and control this disease”, Brillantes said. — Sheila Covarrubias