In Negros Occidental, infant dies from pertussis

In Negros Occidental, infant dies from pertussis

/ 04:30 AM April 17, 2024

5 babies in Negros Occidental infected with pertussis

Pertussis in Negros Occidental. INQUIRER FILES

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines — A 1-month-old boy from a locality in Negros Occidental who tested positive for pertussis, also known as whooping cough, has died, health officials said.

Dr. Girlie Pinongan, the provincial health officer, confirmed on Monday that the first pertussis fatality from an undisclosed local government unit in the province passed away last week at Corazon Locsin Montelibano Memorial Regional Hospital in Bacolod City.


At least 11 babies tested positive for pertussis in Negros Occidental and Bacolod City but there is no need to declare an outbreak yet since the situation is manageable, Pinongan said.


Of the 36 suspected pertussis cases in Negros Occidental, five tested positive, five were negative, while the rest are awaiting test results from the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine, according to Pinongan. The ages of those affected range from 1 month to 62 years old although the majority were babies, she said.

READ: Pertussis: How to protect yourself, loved ones

READ: Pertussis cases rising in 5 regions — DOH

No outbreak

The provincial government is buying 10,000 doses of pentavalent vaccines to protect children from pertussis.

Pinongan said “children should avoid going to crowded places and are advised to wear masks if they must go out.”

In Bacolod City, there were six confirmed pertussis cases—two from Barangay Tangub and one each from Barangays Granada, Handumanan, Taculing and Villamonte.


The cases in Bacolod are counted differently from Negros Occidental since the city is independent from the province. Dr. Ma. Carmela Gensoli, Bacolod City health officer, said all six patients have recovered and have been discharged from hospitals.

Gensoli also said there was no need to declare a pertussis outbreak in Bacolod City since there is no clustering of cases.

READ: DOH records 49 deaths in PH due to pertussis

Purchase 10,000 doses

Bacolod is also set to purchase 10,000 doses of pentavalent vaccines with an allocation of P15 million to curb cases of pertussis. The total doses could cover about 3,300 persons. Pentavalent vaccines protect against pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenzae type B.

Pertussis, a highly contagious bacterial disease, causes severe and uncontrollable coughing fits that can leave the individual “whooping” for deep breaths afterward. It affects people of all ages, but is especially dangerous and even fatal for young children and infants, the Department of Health (DOH) said.

Caused by the bacteria Bordetella pertussis, it is easily transmitted from person to person through infectious droplets produced from coughing or sneezing.

Antibiotics are recommended for treatment and can actually shorten the duration of the disease, as well as the time that an individual can infect other people.

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“That is why it is very important to see a doctor once an individual develops a cough that keeps worsening or does not go away,” the DOH said.

TAGS: DoH, Negros Occidental, pertussis

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