By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

In a follow-up on the dengue fever situation in the Philippines in 2020, the Department of Health (DOH) today disclosed that its initiative against dengue has lowered its number of deaths by as much as 78% from January 1 to August 15 this year.

Dengue mortalities have significantly dropped from 2019 with 1,612 deaths versus 231 in 2020.

In addition, one year after the national dengue epidemic was announced last summer, reported dengue cases have dropped from 430,282 to 59,675 in 2020.

The DOH multi-pronged approach that works in direct cooperation with medical centers and local government units (LGUs) also aims to reduce cases of water-borne infectious diseases, influenza, and leptospirosis, including dengue (W.I.L.D.), which usually peaks at the start of the rainy season.

“After the dengue epidemic of 2019, we have been working vigorously to decrease dengue cases via a systemic approach that involves every level of the community”, shared Dr. Norielyn Evangelista, Program Manager of the National Aedes-borne Viral Diseases Prevention and Control Program (NAVDPCP).

Aedes aegypti

The NAVDPCP’s current activities in 2020 include updating the Dengue Manual of Operations and Administrative Order No. 2012-006: Revised Dengue Clinical Practices Guidelines through Technical Working Group Meeting; partnering with UP-Philippine General Hospital (PGH), UP-National Institutes of Health (NIH), Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM), and World Mosquito Program; and releasing administrative issuances.

Through these efforts, the DOH will roll out the Nucleic Acid Amplification Test-Loop Mediated Isothermal Amplification Assay (NAAT-LAMP) which offers cheaper and simpler dengue diagnosis. It will also implement the Wolbachia Project within Bicol-Center for Health Development (CHD) as part of a non-invasive way to control the local dengue-carrying mosquito population.

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