AN ORDINANCE setting prevention and control measures to mitigate dengue fever cases and requiring all residents to strengthen the fight against the disease has been ratified.

Mayor Mauricio Domogan signed Ordinance No. 66 series of 2016 known as the “Anti-Dengue Ordinance of the City of Baguio” authored by Vice-Mayor Edison Bilog, Councilors Roberto Ortega and Peter Fianza and the rest of the august body.

The measure aims to “continually and substantially reduce the occurrence of dengue cases in the (city) through integrated vector management and implementation of prevention and control measures, and strengthening the fight against it.”

This is in view of the World Health Organization report that dengue is the most rapidly spreading mosquito-borne viral disease in the world.

“The Epidemiology Bureau of the Department of Health has reported that there were 70,697 dengue cases in the Philippines as of morbidity week 29 of 2016. Most of the dengue cases were from the following regions: Region IV-A, Region VII, and Region X11. Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) ranks 9th among the 17 regions with the highest number of dengue cases,” according to the measure.

The ordinance provides that the city’s Dengue Prevention and Control Program will be a concerted effort by the city government, the barangay councils, the school authorities, the Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs) and the community.

To promote the general welfare and safety of the constituents of the city, the following will be implemented with the purpose of preventing and controlling dengue cases.

Under the measure, households and business owners, will be required to properly and tightly cover all water containers that may accumulate water as these are potential breeding places of Aedes Aegypti/Aedes Albopictus mosquitoes, properly dispose broken appliances and other bulky materials which may accumulate rain water.

Residents and businesses are also required to secure clearance from the Health Services Office prior to the use of chemicals for use of killing mosquitoes; to only allow accredited pest control operators to render services with the jurisdiction of the city; to report to hospitals or the nearest health center if any member of a family has any of the symptoms of dengue; implement other preventive and control measures that the DOH or the HSO may provide and introduce in the future; and to inform water authorities of broken water pipelines.

Public and private schools and universities also needs to conduct dengue prevention and control activities inside the school and university every day at 9:00 a.m.

Hospitals are required to provide fast lanes for suspected dengue cases while church organizations should assist the HSO and the media in disseminating dengue prevention and control activities such as ringing of church bells daily at 9:00 a.m. for the community wide search and destroy activities and to encourage parishioners to conduct different dengue prevention and control activities.

Government and private workplaces meanwhile should be updated of the latest dengue situation in the city; conduct search and destroy activities everyday 9:00 a.m. in their offices; seek early consultation when experiencing fever of at least two days; wear protective clothing and apply mosquito repellant during the day.

As per the measure, the HSO will be the lead agency in monitoring the implementation of the ordinance while the Baguio City Anti-Dengue Committee (BCADC will be created through an administrative order of the mayor and will assume the duties of enforcing the provisions of the measure, prepare plans and programs, conduct public health campaigns, information-education-communication IEC, prepare activities throughout the year, make public announcements, among other tasks.

At the same time, the Barangay Anti-Dengue Brigades (BADB) will be formed in the barangays to promote and ensure the implementation of the measures in the grassroots.

Violators will be meted penalties of rendering community services and fines ranging fromP1,000 to P3,000. (Aileen Refuerzo/PIO)