Flu alert up in Philippines-A A +A
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
MANILA -- Despite the end of the annual influenza season in the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) said the public must continue its vigilance over the easily spreadable disease.
In an advisory, DOH Secretary Enrique Ona said the public must continue to watch out for fever with sore throat or cough, which are the identified common signs and symptoms of influenza.
“Influenza can be a very serious disease. It can lead to hospitalization and death,” Ona said.
He noted how the Philippine flu season is from July to December every year.
Ona noted how the young children, pregnant women, senior citizens and those with certain health conditions such as heart, kidney, or lung disease are at high-risk to flu.
Because of this, he urged those manifesting symptoms of flu to isolate themselves from the public temporarily since it easily spreads from person to person through droplets made when one sneezes, coughs or talks.
Ona also said the public must observe closely proper hand washing, cough etiquette and social distancing in a bid to stop viral spread.
In addition, he said individuals should avail of the flu vaccination program in the country’s various health centers.
The advisory was issued amid reports that flu is spreading fiercely across the United States, with more than 40 states reporting widespread activity.
Similarly, the DOH chief said he has already given instructions to concerned agencies, particularly the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ), to intensify fever screening at the points of entry in the country.
“We must be on our guard to detect influenza cases not only at our ports and airports but also from our health facilities,” the official said.
Ona, however, stressed that the DOH is not yet pushing for any travel advisory being issued by the government. (HDT)