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7 die, 1,500 down by dengue in N. Cotabato

HEALTH • 16:05 PM Sat Aug 22, 2015
Edwin O. Fernandez

COTABATO CITY -- Health authorities in North
Cotabato have intensified campaign against cases of dengue as it noted rising
cases this year. Dr. Eva Rabaya, North Cotabato provincial health
chief, said from January to August 15 this year, the Integrated Provincial
Health Office (IPHO) recorded seven death in at least four towns.

This year, Rabaya said, the Provincial Epidemiology
and Surveillance Unit (PESU), listed 1,545 dengue cases which is 92 percent
higher as compared to the same period last year.

Three of those who died due to dengue complications
were from Alamada, a mountain town in North Cotabato's first district. One child died each in the towns of Aleosan,
Carmen, Libungan and Midsayap, all in the first district.

Midsayap also recorded the highest number of dengue
cases among North Cotabato's 17 towns with 275, followed by Tulunan with 208
and Kidapawan City with 185.

Rabaya has appealed to parents to help in the
universal campaign against mosquitoes that carry Aedes Aegypti
virus which causes dengue.

Dengue fever also known as break bone
fever, is a mosquito-borne tropical disease caused by the dengue virus.

Rabaya said children who have fever coupled with headache, muscle and joint pains and a characteristic skin rash that is similar
to measles should be confined in the hospital before the problem gets worst.

If unattended, the disease could develop into the
life-threatening dengue hemorrhagic fever, resulting in bleeding, low levels of
blood platelets and blood plasma leakage, or into dengue shock syndrome, where
dangerously low blood pressure occurs.

The Department of Health had launched various
anti-dengue campaign, including fogging operation, ABKD or Aksyon
Barangay Kontra Dengue.

The latest drive involves the distribution of
larvicide to public schools in an effort to weed out dengue
virus carrying mosquitoes.

Larvicide is a chemical that kills the
larvae of dengue-carrying mosquitoes, the DOH said in a statement.

Rabaya explained that the Aedes Aegypti mosquito
that causes the dengue breeds in clear, stagnant and accumulated water in cans,
old tires, flower pots, flower bases, pails and other containers mostly in

The larvicide will poured into various stagnant
waters to interrupt the larval life stage of an insect. Chemical effectively
could last for eight months.

In North Cotabato, the best and effective campaign
is cleaning the environment and surroundings which will destroy breeding sites
of mosquitoes.

This hitting two birds with one stone
campaign is cost effective and can be done anytime and anywhere.

Some health officials discourage the conduct of
fogging operations as it is considered not environment friendly.

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