Whatever happened to the Department of Health’s (DOH) anti-dengue programs?
That’s what Kabayan Party-list Rep. Ron Salo wants to find out via House probe as he aired grave concern over the current surge in dengue fever cases in the country.
“Every day that passes wherein we don’t act is another day too late. If we don’t act now, our children will suffer the most, as they are the sector most vulnerable to the threats of a dengue outbreak,” said Salo, who filed House Resolution (HR) No. 79.
There has been a record-high increase of 90 percent in dengue fever cases compared to last year’s figures for the same period. Salo said this puts the lives of more children at greater risk of death.
“The rise in dengue cases this year, as reported by the [DOH], is nothing short of alarming, especially when we have reported the lowest number of cases last year since 2009,” said the solon, who chairs the Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs.
Salo, through HR No.79, is asking the House Committee on Health to carry out an investigation in aid of legislation on the national anti-dengue program.
“We urgently need to revisit our country’s dengue prevention and patient care programs so we can immediately curb the rising cases and deaths of dengue in the country and protect the health of our people,” Salo stressed.
“We are talking about deaths which could have been prevented, most of them involving our children,” he added.
“Given the gravity of this problem, it would do well that, in time, a dengue czar who can give full attention in addressing the problem be appointed by the President, just as we had a Covid-19 czar,” Salo concluded.
Antique has declared a state of calamity due to the rise in dengue cases in all its 18 municipalities.
Negros Occidental is also being considered to be placed under the same as it reported a 777 percent increase in the number of cases in the last six months.