AT LEAST five people died while 170 others were hospitalized due to dengue in Misamis Oriental in only a span of two months, data from the Provincial Health Office (PHO) show.

Dr. Ignacio Moreno, PHO chief, said a total of 175 dengue cases were recorded in several towns in the province from January to February 18.

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Moreno said the recorded dengue cases in the first two months of the year was “quite alarming,” noting that mosquito bites have already killed five persons compared to the same period of 2009, which was zero.

“Medyo daghan-daghan karon and quite alarming especially nga dili man unta ting-ulan,” Moreno told Sun.Star on Monday.

The five fatalities were from the towns of Salay (two deaths), Opol, Medina and Kinoguitan.

Tagoloan town accounted for the biggest number of cases, with 31 persons falling ill because of mosquito bites. The town, however, has no recorded fatalities yet this year, although four died of dengue in 2009.

Gingoog City followed with 19 recoded cases.

Moreno urged the public to “pay more attention to dengue cases because the disease has been credited with more deaths nationwide.”

He said “people should conduct regular clean up in their respective areas considering that mosquito bites can only be prevented through sanitation.”

Moreno, meanwhile, expressed confidence that the outbreak of measles in some areas in Metro Manila will not happen in Misamis Oriental.

There’s no cases of measles reported yet in the province, he said. (ALR)