ROXAS City Dengue Program Coordinator Mark Atanque said three persons in Capiz have died of dengue infection.
Atanque made the revelation during the Roxas City Local Health Board meeting at the Roxas City Hall.
The meeting was presided by City Councilor Cesar Yap Jr., committee on health chair, together with City Health Officer Lory Cahilog.
One of the victims came from Ivisan town, while two others are from Milibili and Banica villages in Roxas City.
Dengue cases in the province surged by 189 percent from 160 in 2017 to 480, as of August 11, 2018.
Most of the patients are children one to ten years old.
Atanque reported increasing dengue cases in Ivisan (53), Panay (36), Mambusao (30), and Jamindan (20). Roxas City topped with 212 cases.
REASONS FOR FAILURE
Cris Lamaniego, Roxas City sanitary inspector, offered five possible reasons for the dengue surge: 1) Lack of community involvement, 2) Lack of coordination with other agencies, 3). Lack of support from barangay level, 4) Lack of policies or ordinances, and 5) Lack of implementation or enforcement of existing laws and ordinances (solid waste management).
NOT A BLAME GAME
Yap considered the points as a wake-up call. He also asked that the fourth reason be deleted as he presented the approved ordinance he sponsored in December 2016 or “An ordinance declaring dengue mosquito breeding as illegal and providing fines and penalties therefore”.
Solid waste manager Glenn Amane stressed that despite efforts on garbage collections, people at the barangay level still are uninterested.
He said that the barangay’s support would contribute to a dengue-free community. The barangays reflect people’s attitudes on the grassroots level, he added.
The health board acknowledged that barangay support is a big success factor against dengue. The barangays reflect the attitude of its people at the grassroots level.
Yap further stressed that “we now fight an uphill battle as far as behavior is concerned.”
Fe Salgado, city health information officer, said “people are more afraid of hunger than death.”
She added that people will not come to listen on lectures on dengue, but will quickly assemble if snacks are served.
The board discussed effective game plans from relentless information drive to clean-up activities to positive reinforcement paradigm-shift strategies, but lamented that those are only effective if barangay representatives are present every Local Health Board meeting.
Lawaan village is now active in the cause but only after the Ombudsman called them out, said barangay health workers federation head Erlinda Victoriano.
The Board decided to put the last bet on newly elected barangay officials including Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) members. They set a brainstorming session with them on Sept 14, 2018.
Every three years, the dengue death squad kills ruthlessly. The lethal cycle falls on 2019.
This year, there is a spike in the number of deaths caused by dengue in Roxas City compared to last year.
“If people do not take heed of the deadly outcome, on that election year, the worst is yet to come,” Yap said.