With the onset of the rainy season, Senator Bong Go on Tuesday reminded Filipinos to remain vigilant against dengue and other diseases, such as diarrhea, leptospirosis and influenza, amid the present threat brought by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“During this time when we are still facing the COVID-19 pandemic, we should also be prepared to prevent and control possible outbreaks of rainy-day diseases by practicing proper hygiene, and cleanliness in our homes and in our surroundings,” said Go, chair of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography.
“We should know what to do when there is an increase in number of cases in our areas of residence or in the workplace,” he also said.
He noted that hospitals and health facilities should also be prepared to manage potential cases considering the burden already caused by COVID-19 to the healthcare system.
The senator also echoed the advice of the Department of Health (DOH) to Filipinos to take advantage of the quarantine protocols to clean their surroundings and prevent the outbreak of other kinds of diseases.
Noting how quick contagious diseases spread and spare no one, Go encouraged Filipinos to clean their surroundings and practice health and safety precautions, not just to protect themselves, but also their loved ones, communities, and the rest of the country.
He cited DOH’s 4S strategy against dengue to bolster awareness and prevention from the mosquito-borne disease.
He also told the public to adhere to the minimum health standards, such as the practice of physical distancing, use of face masks and handwashing during this time of pandemic.
“At this time, there may again be a sudden increase in the number of cases of rainy day diseases among the young and old alike as a result of the spread of viruses and bacteria in relatively enclosed spaces or crowded areas,” he said.
Go said as the DOH recently reported that the number of dengue cases in the country from January to May have decreased by 46 percent relative to the same period last year.
According to the DOH Health Promotion and Communication Service, the decrease in dengue cases in the country may be attributed to vector management, increased awareness, and community participation.
“It is vital that everyone is informed about the status of our communities with regards to the trends of the incidence of these diseases so that our LGUs should take the necessary actions to avoid the occurrence of other outbreaks that will compound our problems in dealing with the COVID-19 situation,” Go said.
Given the looming threat brought by COVID-19, dengue and other diseases, Go has previously urged the government to ensure that public hospitals have adequate bed capacity and capabilities to accommodate Filipinos who could get sick in this time of pandemic.
“As we face the COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial to improve our government health facilities and prepare ourselves for any health crisis that may arise in the future,” he said./Stacy Ang