By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr.

Arthur Defensor Jr., the governor of Iloilo, who was hospitalized over the week for suspected dengue fever has returned to work Monday. “I was told that dengue fever starts when you are feeling weak, and knowing that I was exposed (to the vector), I said I will have myself tested for dengue,” he said. He was admitted of Friday.

Image/Philippines DOH

Based on the laboratory results, the governor appeared to have previous dengue exposure; however, his weakness was said to be due to over-fatigue.

“I am okay and recovered. Our work is back to normal,” he said.

The Iloilo Provincial Health Office recorded 15, 531 dengue cases with 55 deaths as of August 10, 2019.

Calls to lift Dengvaxia ban

Patient’s organizations are calling for a lift on the Dengvaxia dengue vaccine ban in light of the National Dengue Emergency and the large numbers of cases nationally.

In a statement, the Philippine Alliance of Patients’ Organizations (PAPO) said they want “proper information from experts to be able to make informed decisions”, hoping that patients and their families could have access to dengue vaccines.

“A vaccine that would benefit a hyperendemic population like our own exists. With an internationally approved vaccine, patients in the Philippines should be allowed the choice of getting immunized,” PAPO president Girlie Lorenzo said, adding that some patients have gone abroad just to access dengue vaccines.

Dengvaxia: Philippines FDA revokes CPR, ‘Sanofi has shown complete disregard of FDA rules’

The PAPO urged the public not to politicize the dengue vaccine issue because “majority of those who are dying from dengue are children.”

According to the Department of Health’s (DOH) Epidemiology Bureau, about 14,321 new dengue cases with 46 deaths were reported from July 20 to August 3.

The DOH said the number of new cases is 76 percent higher than the number of cases recorded in the same period last year. The cumulative number of dengue cases from January 1 to August 3 stands at 188,562. More than 800 fatalities have been reported.

Iligan City State of Calamity

Iligan City officials declared on Tuesday a state of calamity following the alarming increase of dengue cases in the city. Local dengue cases have so far reached 1,138 with 14 deaths from January 1 to August 17 this year, according to the Iligan City Health Office.

City Health Officer Cherlina Caṅaveral said the declaration authorized the local government to use the more than PH8 million as a quick response fund against dengue.

Caṅaveral said the money will be used to purchase protective gear, fogging machines, medicines, olyset nets, and chemicals necessary to combat the mosquito-borne disease.