Typhoid fever cases up in Cordillera

A 153-PERCENT increase in typhoid and paratyphoid fever cases has been reported by the Department of Health in the Cordillera Administrative Region (DOH-CAR).

Geeny Anne Austria Nurse V of DOH-CAR said 681 cases were recorded in the first quarter of 2019 compared to the 289 cases in the first quarter of 2018.

“Compared to the same period last year, we consider this high. Our data shows an increase in all the provinces in the region with Mountain Province having the highest number of cases at 224 or a 1,623 percent increase followed by Benguet with 220 cases or a 168 percent increase, Kalinga with 68 cases or at 39 percent increase, followed by Baguio City with 46 cases or a171 percent increase, Apayao with 45 cases, Ifugao with 38, Abra with 28, while 12 cases came from outside the region. What is good here is that there were no reported deaths due to typhoid-paratyphoid fever disease,” Austria said.

Typhoid and paratyphoid fever are diseases of the intestinal tract caused by the Salmonella typhi and Salmonella paratyphi bacteria.

Typhoid fever is rare in developed countries, but is a major public health problem in many developing countries, where environmental hygiene is poor.

“We do not see any trend in typhoid-paratyphoid fever cases increasing during the summer months, it is an all year round disease because it is a person to person transmission through contaminated food or water because if I were a carrier and I prepared food without the proper hand washing, then I can transfer this to others,” the health representative said.

The regional health department called on the food industry to regularly check food handlers aside from having appropriate hand washing facilities for customers and workers.

“All food establishments must have the necessary permits in selling food products which is being handled by the local government units who issue licenses or permits to food establishments aside from the issuance of health permits to food handlers,” Austria said.

“We need to propagate our hand washing and cleanliness on the part of those who prepares the food because this involves contaminated water or food which is why food handlers should maintain good sanitary practices,” Austria added.


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