CASES of dengue continue to increase in Cagayan de Oro as one person died while 56 others were infected with the disease in August alone.

City Councilor Dante Pajo, chair of the City Council committee on health and sanitation, said the latest casualty was a child from Barangay Carmen, while most of the admitted patients were from Barangays Carmen, Kauswagan, Bonbon, Bayabas, Patag, and Bulua.

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“This month alone, a lot of patients were confined at the J.R. Borja Memorial City Hospital because of dengue. Barangay Bulua is the latest dengue spot in the city,” Pajo said.

From January to August 2010, the City Government recorded 886 dengue cases, up from last year’s 394 cases.

Pajo said sanitary inspectors in the city are now busy monitoring these areas as he warned that dengue cases might continue to rise with the onset of the rainy season.

"But we have already tapped all barangay health workers and coordinated with

City Health Office head Dr. Jerry Calingasan to have a massive information drive in every barangay on dengue prevention," Pajo said.

He said the health workers will conduct lectures and distribute posters in every barangay on how to get rid of dengue carrying mosquitoes, putting emphasis on sanitation.

"If symptoms of dengue like fever occur even if it is still two days, don't hesitate to go directly to the hospital and have your patients check their complete blood count to determine if it's dengue. Do not wait for your patient to bleed," Pajo said.

Dengue is caused by mosquitoes that usually thrive in unused wheels, stagnant waters, flower vases and empty open containers.

"The occurrence of dengue depends on the sanitation of the community. There is nothing in a clean environment, free from stagnant water," Pajo said.

He added that parents and teachers should also help in campaigning about dengue awareness and the need to maintain cleanliness within the school and in their backyard. (Nicole J. Managbanag)