In a follow-up to a report on the chikungunya outbreak in southern Leyte’s Maasin City, The Department of Health (DOH) in the region has intensified its information educational campaign in the three affected barangays (villages).

Aedes mosquito
Aedes aegypti image/CDC

In addition, self-protection method is being recommended by health experts to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes by wearing long sleeves, pants and application of mosquito repellents and the public is encouraged to search and destroy all breeding places of the mosquitoes.

Ma. Elena Joy Villarosa, DOH-8 regional information officer said, 548 suspected cases of chikungunya were recorded from July 1 to September 30, 2016. Fifty five percent of cases were females which is equivalent to 302.

Chikungunya is a viral disease transmitted by the bite of infected mosquitoes such as Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. It can cause high fever, join and muscle pain, and headache. The joint pain may last for months or years and may become a cause of chronic pain and disability.

There is no specific treatment for chikungunya infection, nor any vaccine to prevent it. Pending the development of a new vaccine, the only effective means of prevention is to protect individuals against mosquito bites.