The Department of Health on Monday noted a 60 percent spike in Leptospirosis cases in Metro Manila.
In a press briefing at San Lazaro Hospital in Manila, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said that a total of 234 Leptospirosis cases were recorded compared to last year’s 146 cases, covering Jan. 1 to June 29.
Duque said topping the list of areas in the National Capital Region was Quezon City with 87 cases, followed by Manila with 25 cases, Taguig with 20, Caloocan and Parañaque with 18 each, Makati with 11, Las Piñas and Pasig City with 10 each.
Out of the 234 cases, 38 led to deaths, 22 of which were in Quezon City.
As of July 2, 2018, there were 22 cases of Leptospirosis recorded in San Lazaro.
He noted that when there is inefficient garbage collection, the rats are more likely to roam around and spread the leptospirae virus through their urine, which contaminates flood water, making people prone to getting the disease.
Symptoms include a headache, fever, vomiting, and redness of the eyes.
Untreated Leptospirosis can result in kidney failure and damage to other organs such as the liver.
“The fact that there were deaths is already a cause for alarm. But what is disheartening is this is a preventable disease,” Duque said, noting those who have contracted the bacteria can still be treated if they consult with a physician immediately after getting the symptoms.
Meanwhile, Duque called on local chief executives to step-up their efforts to bring down the cases with preventive measures, like efficient garbage collection in their respective localities to prevent rodent infestation.
For its part, the DoH has prepositioned medicines, like Doxycycline, and other supplies for the treatment and management of Leptospirosis cases.
“Still, the best way to prevent contracting Leptospirosis is by not wading in floodwaters. If it cannot be avoided, one should always wear rubber boots for protection,” the Health chief said.
He reminded the public that at the first sign of the disease’s symptoms, one must immediately go to the nearest health facility for proper treatment and care.
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