EVEN with the massive information campaign of the City Government, cases of dengue in Cagayan de Oro continue to increase.

Dr. Jerry Calingasan, City Health Officer-designate, said from January to June this year, at least five persons already died of dengue while more than 500 have been confined at different hospitals in the city.

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Calingasan said the figure is a far cry from the 300 cases recorded in the same period last year.

“If we include those cases from Misamis Oriental, there would be more than a thousand dengue cases as of last month. Our statistics are so high because patients from other towns were admitted at hospitals in the city,” Calingasan said.

But even with the increasing number of dengue cases, Calingasan said there is nothing to be alarmed, calling it as “a normal problem” due to the existence of “mosquito dwellings” in the community.

He claimed that most patients afflicted with dengue came from low-income families “who do not participate in cleaning their environment” even if the City Government has been doing massive dengue awareness campaign.

“That is why the City Government will not stop on doing dengue awareness to every barangay, especially to public schools, to achieve our goal of eradicating this deadly disease in the city. But dengue is curable if the patient is rushed directly to the hospital,” Calingasan said.

He said they can do nothing if the public will not participate in cleaning their environment.

Meanwhile, Calingasan is discouraging the public from doing fumigation as this will only drive away the mosquitoes that cause dengue while their larva remains.

This, aside from the danger it poses to the lungs.

“The least that we could do now is to advise and educate the public that dengue can be eradicated if we help each other in cleaning the environment and the surroundings. It’s up to the public to do their share,” Calingasan said.

On the common notion that an herb called tawa-tawa cures dengue, Calingasan said this is not true as this would only normalize the platelet count of the patient and not totally treating them.

He said this will just create a misdiagnosis to doctors and complicate the problem. (Nicole Managbanag)