By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

A recent Op-Ed article on the Filipino news site, Mindanao Times, discussed the “dengue season” and to remember it’s still around, even in the world of COVID-19. The editors write-So as we undertake measures to keep safe from the COVID 19, we should also bear in mind that dengue is still very much around.

Aedes aegypti/CDC

True, dengue is down this year to date compared to the monster year the country faced in 2019 when some 420,000 cases and 1500 deaths were recorded. Through the end of May this year, the Philippines has reported a cumulative total of 50,169 dengue cases with 173 deaths — 43% lower compared to the 92,808 cases with 452 deaths reported in the same period in 2019.

But the threat of dengue still exists. In the Eastern Visayas (Leyte and Samar), more than 4100 patients sent to hospitals and nine died.

In Negros Oriental, officials are calling on the public to put in place measures against dengue with the onset of the rainy season, when dengue cases are expected to peak. Dr. Socrates Villamor said the fight against dengue might be relegated to the sidelines because health and local government authorities are currently more focused on containing the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

And in Cagayan de Oro, as the moonsoon season sets in, health officials are now intensifying its campaign  against dengue virus on top of its efforts at curbing the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

“Since it’s rainy season again in the country, we need to heighten the “4S” campaign against dengue, namely, ‘search and destroy,’ the breeding places of mosquitoes, ‘secure self-protection’measures like wearing of long sleeves and mosquito repellents, ‘seek early consultation’ when having fever or influenza-like symptoms, and ‘saying no’ to indiscriminate fogging unless when necessary,” DOH-10 Health Education and Promotion Officer (HEPO) Aian Rebollido Caridad said.

This region has also received 4,101 reported cases of dengue from January to July 3.