By Argyll Cyrus Geducos
Malacañang assured the public that it is closely monitoring cases of Japanese encephalitis in the country with the onset of the rainy season.
This after the Department of Health (DOH) reminded the public to step up preventive measures to avoid the mosquito-borne disease.
According to Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella, the Palace is closely monitoring the spread of the cases of the disease especially when transmission of the virus peaks because of the rise in the mosquito population during the rainy season.
“We encourage the local government units to report and notify suspected cases of Japanese encephalitis,” Abella said in a statement.
“Prevention of Japanese encephalitis, like dengue, focuses on the identification and destruction of breeding places of mosquitoes,” he added.
The Palace official noted that the DOH is currently firming up plans to introduce vaccination among young children in 2018.
Japanese encephalitis is a viral disease transmitted through the bite of the Culex tritaeniorhyncus mosquito.
The disease, which is endemic to the Philippines, is characterized by encephalitis or inflammation of the brain. Transmission may occur year-round, but those infected may not have signs from five to 15 days after being bitten.
These signs include fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, and confusion. In severe cases, it may lead to neck stiffness, seizures, paralysis, coma, and possible death.
So far, nine people were reported to have died due to the disease, four cases lower than the same period last year.
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