GOVERNOR Eugenio Jose Lacson confirmed yesterday, September 29, that another resident of Silay City fell ill to cholera bringing the total number of cases in the northern Negros Occidental locality to five.

Lacson said that three of these cases are from Barangay Guinhalaran, where an 88-year-old woman died, and one each in Barangays Lantad and E. Lopez.

Provincewide, the total number of cholera cases has now climbed to seven. Of which, two are from Sitio Tinapok, Barangay Batea in E.B. Magalona and Sitio Pasil of Barangay 6-A in Victorias City.

Lacson said that if cases continue to rise it can be alarming although he said that the local government units (LGUs) concerned are already aware of the situation.

He said that the cases are few right now but if an LGU will do nothing about it, then the disease could further spread.

But Lacson noted that the officials of Silay City are taking measures to arrest the cholera cases in their area.

The governor reiterated his call to the LGUs to inspect their respective community water sources including water refilling stations to avoid the bacterial illness.

In E.B. Magalona, Mayor Marvin Malacon, in a statement, confirmed the cholera case in the town as per a report of the Municipal Health Office.

The patient is a 30-year-old female resident according to Municipal Health Officer Dr. Edmundo Janeo.

She was diagnosed with “acute gastroenteritis with severe dehydration- cholera.”

She was admitted at the Teresa L. Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City on Friday, September 23. She had been discharged and is now in stable condition.

“I, together with Vice Mayor Eric Matulac, Councilors Edgardo Agravante Jr., Wyndel Depasucat, Jovie Madayag and Isidro Gomed Jr., visited Barangay Batea Thursday morning to check on the residents and warm them against cholera,” Malacon said.

They were accompanied by Batea Punong Barangay Hernani Bunda and Municipal Development Planning Officer Engineer Erwin Poniado.

“We advised the residents to make sure their food and water are clean, and when in doubt, to boil their drinking water, or subject them to chlorination,” he said.

The local health office also got the water samples from Sitio Tinapok and sent them to the Provincial Health Office (PHO), which will in turn send them to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) for examination.

So as not to worsen the situation, Malacon, as chair of the Local Drinking Water Committee, will call for a meeting with the committee members on Monday morning, October 3, to discuss ways on how to contain cholera in our community.

“We will also call a meeting with the owners and operators of water refilling stations in the municipality to discuss this matter and urge them to have their water be regularly subjected to bacteriological water testing,” he added.

The PHO, meanwhile, has submitted to the RITM water samples from the barangays where cholera cases have been reported.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Ernell Tumimbang assured the Negrenses not to panic, as the cases are only isolated.

He pointed out that unlike Covid-19 which is viral and can easily be transmitted, cholera is bacterial and originates from unsanitary water or poorly prepared food.

Tumimbang advised Negrenses to boil their drinking water first and practice proper hygiene by washing their hands before preparing or eating their meals.

“Personal hygiene matters to avoid cholera,” he pointed out.*