The Department of Health (DOH) continuously puts the country’s dengue situation under surveillance as this is key to putting a stop to the increasing number of dengue cases in the country.
DOH Secretary Enrique Ona, during the Broadcasters’ Forum held earlier today at Hotel Rembrandt, said that surveillance and sanitation of dengue fever patients are the means to curb the increasing number of patients, most of whom are children.
Dr. Rose Capending of the Research Institute of Tropical Medicine (RITM) said that the Philippines, most especially, needs to be vigilant in its monitoring of dengue cases since “dengue is endemic in the country” with all the four types—types 1, 2, 3, and 4—existing in the Philippines and in most tropical countries.
Capending said that the most common dengue type in the Philippines is the type 3 virus. However, the type 1 dengue is already increasing in number, sending an early signal of a dengue outbreak.
Capending said that since children are the ones highly susceptible to the disease, it is advisable to have children vaccinated by the tetravalent dengue vaccine which has been proven to be effective against all dengue types.
However, the DOH is still advising the public to seek hospital help in case of signs of dengue infection rather than rely on emerging herbal cures, like the Tawa-tawa leaves, which do not have the approval of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Meanwhile, due to the outbreak of dengue, hospitals especially government hospitals have been experiencing shortage of doctors, nurses, blood, etc. In this regard, Agham Patrylist Representative Popoy Pagayon calls for a mandatory Philhealth enrolment amongst all Filipinos which will help in solving the healthcare woes of the country.
The “universal” health program would provide solution to the dwindling number of health services and service provider in the country.