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DOH7 on code white alert, prepares for El Niño

DOH Region 7 Medical Officer IV Dr. Shelbay Blanco during the Kapihan interview on April 12.

CEBU CITY, Cebu, April 12 (PIA) -- The Department of Health (DOH) together with the Cebu Port Authority, Mactan Cebu International Airport Authority, local government units, and partner stakeholders launched the “Oplan Init sa Tag-init” to monitor health-related incidents and diseases brought about by the dry season and the El Niño phenomenon.

The warm and dry season coined by Filipinos as “summer” season began on March 21 as announced by PAGASA as warmer temperature is expected across the country.

DOH Region 7 Medical Officer IV Dr. Shelbay Blanco, during the Kapihan sa PIA, disclosed that the multi-sectoral task force will provide interventions for health-related diseases and incidents from April 1 to June 30.

Areas of convergence are closely monitored like terminals, airports, beaches, and tourist spots since these are high-risk areas due to the high influx of people.

Aside from monitoring dry season diseases like diarrhea, amoebaiasis, dehydration, measles, conjunctivitis, heat strokes, coughs and colds, the task force will also be monitoring health-related incidents like drowning and animal bites.

Blanco added that the region has been placed under Code White Alert from April 1 to June 30 in preparation for the El Niño phenomenon.

“Since April 1, we have noted cases of animal bites totaling 695. We have cases of diarrhea totaling 217 cases, and then hand, foot mouth disease at 160 cases, and we have dehydration and COVID cases still being reported,” Blanco said.

Aside from this, the agency has also recorded 64 cases of drowning in the region.

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” Blanco added.

He also advised those with hypertension and diabetes to avoid longer sun exposure and for everyone to stay hydrated.

Wearing light-colored clothes and bringing sun protection like umbrellas and caps are also encouraged.

With the high case of animal bites in the region, Blanco encouraged those with pets to be responsible pet owners. (MYP/PIA7)

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Myrtle Pasigan

Information Officer

Region 7

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