Accumulated wastewater, rubbish in Rim Bung Makkasan, Bangkok, Thailand | CCTV via REUTERS
Thailand has seen over 59,000 patients infected with dengue fever, 69 of whom died from the disease, according to the figures given by the country’s health department in September.
In Bangkok, the capital of Thailand, the latest number of dengue sufferers is 5,899 with five deaths. Two victims came from the slum of Rim Bung Makkasan, one of the most dengue-hit areas in the city.
The sanitary condition in Rim Bung Makkasan is so bad, with a large amount of rubbish piled up there, and smelly wastewater accumulated in low-lying areas, which provide a suitable environment for insects like mosquitoes to grow up in the rainy season, intensifying the epidemic situation here.
Most of the residents living in the shanties in Rim Bung Makkasan are migrant workers and their children and elder family members.
For Uraiphon, her son and grandson were both infected with dengue, and the disease claimed the life of her son days ago.
Uraiphon said there are about 200 people in the slum, some of whom suffered dengue, but now the situation is getting better.
“After my son died of dengue, no one more was diagnosed with the disease here,” said Uraiphon.
Now Bangkok’s disease control department has taken measures to hold back dengue from spreading by killing mosquitoes and eliminating accumulated water.
“The government dispatched workers like avenue leader and medical staffers to help us wipe out disease. The mosquitoes were reproduced from wastewater and rubbish. In recent days, the government is conducting us to work at the sanitary work. We cooperated with each other to make the environment better. We thank them very much,” said Somtawin, another resident in Rim Bung Makkasan
Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne contagious tropical disease caused by the dengue virus. After infected, the patients will have symptoms like fever, headache, and arthralgia. Now there has no efficient drug to fight against the disease.
In Thailand, the peak time of dengue breakout is the rainy season from July to September. The data from the Thai health department indicate that last year, 9,368 people in Bangkok were infected with Dengue, six of whom lost their lives. — Reuters
PCMC to public over dengue death: ‘No outbreak’
QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The administration of the Philippine Children’s Medical Center has allayed public fears over an alleged outbreak of dengue in the facility following the death of a doctor due to severe dengue.
On Monday, September 24, the hospital’s executive director Dr. Julious Lecciones assured in an interview that there is no reason for patients and visitors to refrain from going into the facility.
“Hindi naman ang ospital ngayon na kung pumunta ka ay magkaka- dengue ka rito sa ospital, that we assure the public…hindi nila dapat katakutan ang pagpunta sa Ospital,” Lecciones said.
He stressed that there is no outbreak of dengue within the facility. In fact, it is one of the hospitals that treat emergency cases of dengue.
“Ang PCMC ay isa sa mga hospital na tumatanggap ng mahihirap na kaso at kabilang na iyan – ang dengue – na kung dalhin sa amin ay talaga nga namang maa- ICU na ang karamihan sa kanila at sa ngayon sila ang nakakapuno sa ICU naming,” Lecciones explained.
The PCMC appeals to the public not to link the incident to Dengvaxia as it is a different concern and also in respect of the doctor’s family and colleagues as they grieve the loss of a dedicated pediatric surgeon.
“Wala po sa mga doktor namin …wala pong nabakunahan ng Dengvaxia,” he assured.
To prevent further spread of dengue, the hospital management ordered a continuous cleaning, misting and fogging especially at the hospital’s outpatient ward where the five doctors contracted dengue.
“Tuloy- tuoy nga ang aming pag- search and destroy. Tuloy- tuloy ang general cleaning sa buong hospital. In fact, nitong weekend talagang nagkaroon ng malawakang paglilinis. Nag-mist and spraying ng insecticide at kasama na rin doon ang fogging para lang matanggal o mawala ang mga lamok na ito,” said Dr. Socia Gonzales, PCMC’s spokesperson.
All 1,020 employees were also ordered for a general check-up to ensure that no one else has contracted the disease.
The hospital management has also coordinated with the local government of Quezon City to intensify information and awareness campaign so that residents in the surrounding area of PCMC will be warned to protect against dengue.
All visitors are also being strictly checked especially arriving children as they are the most vulnerable to any kinds of diseases.
The PCMC is expecting for the arrival of representatives from the DOH’s Epidemiology Bureau and the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM for the overall checking and evaluation on the health conditions of all staff, doctors, and patients within the facility. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Aiko Miguel)
UK baby born with heart outside body allowed to visit home
Baby Vanellope Wilkins | REUTERS
A British baby who was born with her heart outside her body has been allowed to make visits to her parents’ home after months in a hospital, the BBC reported on Monday (September 10).
Vanellope Wilkins was born last November, with medics giving her less than a 10 percent chance of survival.
However, after nine months and three operations for the rare condition, she has now begun spending time at the home of her parents, Naomi Findlay and Dean Wilkins, in Bulwell in central England, the BBC said.
They have had to recreate the hospital’s critical care environment at their house but are hoping she will be able to return home permanently.
Vanellope was due to be delivered on Christmas Eve last year but the condition, ectopia cordis, meant she had to be born prematurely by Caesarean section on Nov. 22. Vanellope is believed to be the first baby born with the condition in Britain to have survived. — Reuters
100% increase in Dengue cases alarms Nueva Ecija
NUEVA ECIJA, Philippines – A total of 1,538 cases of dengue infection was recorded in Nueva Ecija in the period of January to July of this year.
The figure is almost triple the number of cases during the same period last year which recorded 566 cases.
The Provincial Health Office expressed concern over the surge of dengue infection. Most of the cases were recorded in Cabanatuan and Bongabon with 307 and 79 cases respectively.
According to Dr. Benjamin Lopez, the spread of dengue infection was due to flood and unclean surroundings left by monsoon rains that established breeding grounds for dengue-carrying mosquitoes.
The PHO is working double time to destroy such breeding grounds to prevent further spread of dengue infection.
“Iyon pong pagtutok sa search and destroy, pagba-bahay-bahay, talagang tinitignan ang mga pinamumugaran ng lamok. Ang priority po natin ang ating schools dahil karamihan po at majority po ng cases po natin ay nasa school-age children,” explained Lopez.
To date, dengue has claimed the lives of 10 individuals in the province, according to Lopez, mostly between the ages of 6 and 12.
Nevertheless, the PHO assured they have enough supply of medicine and larvicide for prevention.
Health authorities remind the public to immediately seek professional help once symptoms of dengue infection occur. – Danny Munar / Marje Pelayo