ANGELES CITY- As rainy season approaches, village chiefs and barangay officials of this city were gathered for a two-day seminar and training on dengue vector surveillance, held on June 21 and 22 at the City Hall Legislative Building.
The City Health Office (CHO) in partnership with the Department of Health (DOH) and the Provincial Health Office (PHO), facilitated the seminar with the theme, “Search (and destroy mosquito breeding places) and Seek (early consultation).”
“Dengue is the most rapidly spreading mosquito-borne viral disease. Among 81 provinces in the Philippines, Pampanga ranks third when it comes to Dengue cases”, said Roselyn Joy Malit, the Regional Dengue Coordinator.
The training serves as an eye-opener to the participants for them to take action on reducing the burden of dengue. It focuses on the “4S strategies” namely: (1) search and destroy, (2) self-protection measures, (3) seek early consultation, and (4) say yes to fogging only during outbreaks.
During the first day, resource persons of the said series of talks warned the participants on possible outbreaks of Dengue as well as of some related illnesses caused by Mosquitoes.
Philippine Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response / Event-based Surveillance and Response (PIDS-ESR) Point Officer Jess Christian Musngi, RN., discussed the Japanese Encephalitis, an illness also gained from mosquitoes.
On the other hand, Provincial Dengue and Malaria Coordinator Jolly Garcia, talked about vector bionomics, mosquito life cycle, feeding and resting habits, and habitats.
Garcia, who is a registered medical technologist, also gave tips and suggestions on preventing Dengue in their barangay through simple measures which includes spot map making, conduct of dengue summits, community-based anti-Dengue fora and speaking engagements to inform the people about the risks.
She also urged village officials to regularly conduct clean-up activities, sustain the conduct Brigada Eskwela and use of long lasting insecticide treated curtains (LLITC) in dengue prone schools to counter and control its outbreak.
On the second day, barangay officials were tasked to perform an actual house-to-house dengue vector surveillance in Barangay Pandan since the village posted the most number of Dengue cases in the city.
According to Garcia, members of the barangay dengue task force were trained to collect, examine, and detect whether a sample mosquito larvae contains viruses that could cause Dengue Fever.
A pledge of commitment was signed to cap the said two-day Dengue seminar where the participants agreed to conduct dengue vector surveillance every first Friday of the month, and a search and destroy operations on the following Fridays.
The DOH has declared June of every year as Philippine dengue awareness month. On June 30, the Province of Pampanga and Angeles City are set to celebrate the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Dengue Day to be hosted by Mabalacat City.
The said observance is an expression of oneness with the ASEAN community in raising awareness about Dengue, and mobilization of resources for disease prevention and control.
(AC-CIO with reports from Cathryn Cortez)