Editorial: Dengue concerns-A A +A
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
SUN.STAR Davao starts today, Wednesday, a three-part series of feature articles on dengue following a disconcerting increase that can easily top the number of cases in a decade as it breaches the 5,000 mark with still one quarter of the year to go.
In the period 2003-2012, the highest number of dengue cases in Davao City so far was logged in 2010 with a total of 7,401. As of September 8, the running total for Davao City is already 5,046.
While no one is ringing the alarm, we know this is already alarming.
The sad part, however, is that everyone except small children knows how to reduce the likelihood of being infected -- cleaning up one’s surroundings. After a massive community cleanup in 2011, however, people seem to have become complacent. The 2011 experience is worth emulating. Through the massive “4 o’clock habit,” a barangay based cleanup drive against dengue, dengue cases dropped to an all-time low of 899 cases from 2010’s 7,401 cases and the 3,200 average annual cases in the seven years before these. But that success was quickly wiped out the following year as we mark 5,046 cases as of September 8.
We can only commiserate with the frustration of Philippine Red Cross Davao City Chapter service representative for community health and nursing services and focal person for social services Ritchestar Renacia, RN, when he said, "Na-exhaust na namo ang among efforts para ma-disseminate ang information with regards to dengue management. Naa na lang gyud sa tao kung i-apply nila ang mga ginaingon namo (We have exhausted all our efforts to disseminate information on dengue management. It is now up to the people to apply the information given)."
We know, everyone knows, but cleaning up one’s surroundings is just too cumbersome for many, and so the number grows, and grows. Sadly, it is the children who mostly lose the battle.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on September 26, 2012.