THE Department of Health (DOH) on Wednesday reported that dengue fever has claimed 19 lives in Western Visayas as of June 2, 2018.
A total of 2,698 dengue cases have been recorded during the same period, said Dr. Rose Marie Lamirez, in-charge of the dengue and malaria program of the Department of Health (DOH) in Region 6.
The highest number of cases is in Negros Occidental with 1,284 cases and 10 deaths.
Aklan has 371 cases; Antique, 201; Guimaras, 17; Iloilo province, 295; Iloilo City, 90; Bacolod City; 256 and others, 37. The other patients are transients who contracted the disease and admitted during their visit to Western Visayas.
Aklan and Iloilo City and province reported one death each; Antique has two and Bacolod City has four.
The cases ranged from as young as 4 months old children to 78 years old.
Lamirez said that while the figures have not reached the 1 percent case fatality rate, health officials are calling on the public to be vigilant because the cases are now at 0.7 percent.
“Because of the effect of global warming and the effect of technology the mosquitoes also intensify their virulence,” she said.
Lamirez added that their thrust is to intensify their awareness drive with the theme “Kung Wala Lamok, Wala Dengue” so as to reduce if not totally eliminate the cases.
Lamirez said Negros Occidental has yet to declare a dengue outbreak but six hotspots were identified due to the increasing number of cases in six consecutive weeks.
Also, clustering of cases in 30 areas (three to six cases) was monitored in the area in four consecutive weeks.
She also warned that the infection mostly affected children one to 10 years old.
The highest increase was recorded in Guimaras at 143 percent. In 2017, the province only had seven cases as against the 17 recorded for the same period this year.
In 2017, DOH recorded 2,150 cases with 22 deaths.
To address the concern, she pointed out that ever since they have been advocating for the 4S or the need to search and destroy the breeding places of mosquitoes; be vigilant of symptoms and seek early treatment; self- protection by wearing protective gears and say no to indiscriminate fogging.
“We only resort to fogging if needed,” she underscored. (PNA)