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Iloilo province heightens safety measures vs AGE

ILOILO CITY (PIA) -- Response and preventive measures are intensified in the province of Iloilo amid the spike of acute gastroenteritis
(AGE) cases here.

In a Capitol press release, Iloilo Provincial Health Officer Dr. Maria Socorro Quiñon reported that the PHO is closely coordinating with the municipal epidemiology surveillance units to beef up the detection and reporting of AGE cases in their town.

“All reported clustering of AGE cases was immediately coordinated with the PHO water focal person for further investigation and management,” according to the press statement.

Based on the PHO data, Iloilo province logged a total of 36 AGE cases as of September 11.

Meanwhile, the town of Tigbauan recorded the highest cases with 10, followed by Oton with nine; Leganes with five; Santa Barbara and Pavia got three each; and one case each was reported from Anilao, Barotac Nuevo, Dingle, New Lucena, Pototan, and San Dionisio.

Of the total cases, 20 are admitted and recovering; 10 are recuperating at home; and six already recovered. Most of the patients belong to children aged 1 to 10 with 13 cases.

The PHO has also augmented water testing kits and chlorine to affected municipalities.

To note, Chromogenic substrate (Colitag) for water testing and Troclosene sodium (Aquatabs) for disinfection of water sources were distributed.

Quiñon said it has been the practice of the province to regularly purchase Colilert for water testing and chlorine granules for disinfection of deep wells.

She added that the Provincial Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (PESU) in coordination with the MESUs and sanitation inspectors of the province and municipalities/city collect results of water testing conducted monthly for water refilling stations.

Ocular inspections were conducted in Brgy. Pantalan, Anilao; Brgy. Liboo, Dingle; Brgy. Guinobatan, Leganes; and Brgy. Cagbang, Oton.

Deep wells from three households in Oton tested positive for coliform and E. coli. Four refilling stations in Leganes came up with negative results while results for the two deep wells are still pending.

Moreover, the PHO continues to hold advocacy campaigns and information dissemination on AGE prevention and control.

The zero open defecation (ZOD) ordinance is being strictly implemented in coordination with the local government units.

Quiñon appealed to the public to refrain from buying food or water from unreliable sources. Frequent hand washing and wearing of face masks should be practiced.

Vendors are also reminded to observe safe food handling by wearing face masks and gloves. (JBG/LMLE/PIA Iloilo/LHC/Capitol Press Release)

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Liez'l Marie Lamasan-Ejeda

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