The Rural Health Units (RHUs) in the 31 towns and cities of Negros Occidental have activated their dengue fast lanes amid the alarming increase in cases in the province, Dr. Ernell Tumimbang, Provincial Health Officer, said Tuesday, May 31.
The dengue cases in Negros Occidental have increased by 282 percent compared to last year, which is the highest in Western Visayas, the Department of Health reported on Monday.
Negros Occidental had 96 new dengue cases from May 15 to 21 bringing its total this year to 657 cases and five deaths.
The dengue situation in Negros Occidental has hit an alert threshold and with a few more cases could hit an epidemic threshold, Tumimbang said.
He said the RHU dengue fast lanes will prioritize patients with dengue symptoms that include sudden onset of fever plus two of the following: headache, body weakness, joint and muscle pains, pain behind the eyes, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, and skin rashes.
The RHU fast lanes will serve as triage areas where patients can be subjected to antigen tests for dengue and were health personnel will determine if hospital referrals are needed or just home care, Tumimbang said.
Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson also said the dengue situation in the province is alarming and the Provincial Health Office is taking remedial measures. The PHO is reminding people to keep their surroundings clean to prevent the propagation of mosquitoes that are dengue carriers, he said.
To avoid the continuous increase in dengue cases, the DOH said the public needs to practice the 4S behaviors – Search and destroy breeding places, Secure self-protection, Seek early consultation, and Support fogging/spraying in hotspot areas – especially as the country is experiencing the rainy season.*