2nd enterovirus-71 case reported in BenguetPhilippine Daily Inquirer
The Department of Health (DOH) on Tuesday confirmed a second case of enterovirus-71 (EV-71) in the country—a five-year-old boy from Benguet who tested positive.
But Dr. Eric Tayag, the DOH spokesperson, said there was no cause for alarm as the infection was mild.
“It was very mild and the boy recuperated well,” he said.
The first case of EV-71 in the Philippines was a 19-month-old boy from Davao City who has since recovered.
EV-71 is a more virulent form of enterovirus, a group of viruses second only to the common cold viruses, the rhinoviruses, as the most common viral infectious agents in humans. It killed at least 56 children in Cambodia recently.
EV-71 is a major causative agent for the condition known as hand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD), a common illness of infants and children.
Out of 43 suspected cases of HFMD that have been tested since the first EV-71 case in Davao, the Benguet boy was the only one to have been found with the same virus strain that caused the recent deaths in Cambodia, the DOH said.
Tayag said 20 Filipinos had tested positive for the enterovirus, which is found in respiratory secretions.
“These cases were from southern Luzon and Davao, but no one is in grave condition,” said Tayag.
The DOH has warned Filipinos to be mindful of their personal hygiene to prevent the virus from spreading.
“You can presume it can occur anywhere so we must take handwashing seriously,” said Tayag. Kristine L. Alave