Cotabato City (June 01, 2016) – The Department of Health of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DOH-ARMM) has advised residents in the region to take precautionary measures against dengue and water-borne diseases now that the wet season has officially started.


Christine Joy Capin, DOH-ARMM assistant program coordinator for dengue prevention and control and food and water-borne diseases, said the region normally sees a rise in the number of dengue cases during the rainy season and they are taking steps to reduce the number of infection this year.

“Residents should observe different measures to combat the spread of the disease. Some of the things they should do includes drying stagnant waters in the house, cleaning their roof gutters, immediately seek medical assistance when fever lasts for at least two days, and using insect repellants and wearing long sleeve shirts,” Capin said.

She said the DOH-ARMM is currently conducting an extensive information drive in schools and communities in the region to help minimize the number of dengue cases. She said they are encouraging residents to observe the “4S” mechanisms in dengue prevention and control.

The“4S” means:
•Search and destroy;
• Seek immediate action;
• Say no to indiscriminate fogging; and
• Self-protection measures.

Dengue is an acute viral infection acquired from the bite of a female Aedes aegypti mosquito. This fatal disease usually affects infants and children in tropical and subtropical countries like the Philippines. Its signs and symptoms include fever which extends from 2-7 days, skin flushing, loss of appetite, vomiting, and in severe cases, nose bleeding and bleeding of gums.

The DOH-ARMM has recorded 78 dengue cases with one fatality in the entire ARMM during the first quarter of this year.

Capin said the number is significantly lower compared to the first quarter of 2015, where 487 cases with five fatalities were reported. They have recorded a total of 2,376 cases with 24 deaths across the region in the same year. Marawi City recorded the highest number of cases with 758 followed by Maguindanao province with 614 cases.
Moreover, Capin also cautioned residents against common water-borne diseases like diarrhea, amoebiasis, hepatitis A, and cholera. She added that cold and cough are also very common during the rainy season.

She said observing cleanliness and being vigilant help reduce the chance of contacting any of these diseases.
“Observe proper hand washing before and after meals and also wash the fruits and vegetables you eat,” Capin said. (Bureau of Public Information)