Rama to form dengue task forceCebu Daily News
Mayor Michael Rama plans to create a task force to eliminate stagnant water in the city to combat dengue fever.
Cebu City has for years topped Central Visayas in the number of dengue cases and dengue-caused deaths.
Rama said the fight should be brought to the source of the disease – mosquitoes which breed in stagnant waters.
“Di ta magsige storya sa anti-dengue,” said Rama adding that “dengue should not be a menace anymore.”
“We have to go back to the roots,” added Rama.
Rama said the task force shall be enforced through creating an ordinance so that there will be sanctions and penalties to possible violators.
But the mayor said he wants a city ordinance passed on dealing with dengue fever, particularly on the elimination of stagnant water so that there will be sanctions for violators.
The Department of Health (DOH) Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit has been campaigning to local government unit (LGUs) to intensify information campaign on dengue.
The agency emphasized the importance of eliminating the breeding places of mosquitoes.
DOH-RESU 7 Diseases Reporting Units (DRU) Admission had reported that among the top 10 municipalities and cities in Region 7, Cebu is number one with 3,081 cases and 12 deaths as of January 1 to September 1 this year. Most of those affected were under 6 -10 years age group or about 25.8 percent.
It states that most of the cases are from Cebu City with 44 percent followed by Lapu-Lapu City with 6.5 percent, Dumaguete City with 5.5 percent, Minglanilla with 3.5 percent and Talisay City with 3.2 percent.
Last year, Cebu City has 1,137 cases of dengue with eight reported deaths.
The cases and deaths of dengue this year totalled 7,055 cases with 35 deaths as reported from different DRUs.
The reports stated that dengue incidence is 111 percent higher compared to the same period last year.
Rama ordered his city department heads to draft an ordinance specific for dengue.
Alvin Santillana, operations officer of City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC), Dr. Lee James Maratas, head of pediatrics ward in Cebu city Memorial Medical Center (CCMC) and other city hospital personnel met with the mayor for the prevention of dengue, last Wednesday, the day before the mayor left the city for Xiamen, China.
Some of the provisions of the sanitary code will be part of the ordinance to focus on dengue alone, said Rama.
Rama said the creation of the task force will imply that the city is “very serious” in reducing dengue cases in Cebu City.
DOH also advised LGUs to mobilize the communities to actively participate in environmental sanitation activities such as clean-up drives; and establish dengue brigades in barangays.
“The community will be part and whoever will violate will be sanctioned,” said Rama.
The Task Force will be composed of five groups in the city departments and private sector.
Among these departments are the Department of Public Services (DPS), the Quick Response Team of the CDRRMC, City Health Department, and the Rotary Club.
Rama encouraged Barangay Environmental Officers (BEOs) and the Church to be part of the task force, just like the “Gubat sa Basura.”
The Cebu City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CCENRO), BEO and Cebu City Environmental Sanitation Enforcement Team (CESET) shall compose the enforcement team, said Santillana. /Tweeny M. Malinao, Correspondent