Zambo boy dies of meningococcemia
ZAMBOANGA CITY — More than 200 people, who had come in contact with a 7-year-old boy who died of meningococcemia here last week, were given prophylaxis against the deadly bacteria, the City Health Office (CHO) said.
Dr. Maria Ivy Rozeth Saavedra-Iturralde, CHO medical officer, said among those who already received antibiotic doses were the boy’s parents and other immediate family members, the doctors and nurses in the two hospitals where he had been treated and several neighbors.
According to the Department of Health, meningococcemia is an acute and potentially life-threatening bacterial infection of the bloodstream. It said the bacteria frequently lived in a person’s upper respiratory tract without causing visible signs of illness.
Iturralde said health personnel were still tracing other people, including the boy’s playmates, who may have had direct contact with him prior to his death on Aug. 16.
While those who had direct contact with the boy had been placed under “surveillance” or strict health monitoring, Iturralde said there was no recommendation yet to place them in isolation.
“They are still allowed to move around,” she said.
The boy, she said, was confirmed to have died of meningococcemia based on the result of his blood culture. —Julie Alipala
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