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HEALTH NEWS & INFORMATION
Southern Leyte to be the 1st filaria-free province in Cebu City
Posted by Yel Cobile, IT Admin & Correspondent on September 15, 2012, 7:22 pm

(By Rebecca S. Cadavos, PIA-8 Southern Leyte, 15 Sep 2012)

MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte (PIA) -- The province of Southern Leyte was showcased as the first filaria-free province of the Philippines on September 13 and 14 at the Puntavillo Resort in Cebu City.

“A gallery of interventions indicated through tarpaulins was shown at the forum focusing on how Southern Leyte acquired positive interventions in sustaining a filaria-free province since 2008,” Provincial Statistician Eusebio Faelnar said.

The incidence of filariasis challenged the Provincial Health Office to take steps to respond to the menace.

According to Wikipedia, Filariasis (philariasis) is a parasitic disease (usually an infectious tropical disease) that is caused by thread-like nematodes (roundworms) belonging to the superfamily Filarioidea, also known as "filariae." These are transmitted from host to host by blood-feeding arthropods, mainly black flies and mosquitoes.

“A series of interventions were conducted such as community participation, political and technical leadership and mass drug administration therapy in order to sustain the negative filarial rate in the province,” Faelnar said.

After two years from the declaration, reassessment was conducted within the border municipalities, such as in the municipalities of Sogod, Bontoc, and Mahaplag-Silago-Abuyog boundaries, Faelnar said.

“The Provincial Medical Technologists in coordination with the Department of Health Technical Working Group based in Region 8 performed a nocturnal blood examination using the lot quality assurance process for laboratory examinations from the aforementioned boundaries, “Faelnar further said.

Another initial reassessment for this year was conducted with at least 353 samples, he added.

Faelnar said the the surveyed samples were found out to be negative, and was assessed that the province of Southern Leyte is still negative of micro-filarial rate up to present.

The province in 1999 had cases of filariasis with a prevalence rate of 2.3 per 1,000 population and was declared as filarial-free since 2008.

The two-day forum in Cebu City was initiated by the Coalition for the Elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis-Philippines with the theme, “LF Free: An experience, A Challenge and A Commitment.”

Provincial Health Officer II Dr. Joselito Trumata of the Salvacion Oppus Yñiguez Memorail Provincial Hospital (SOYMPH) is expected to attend the gathering. (EOT/RSC-PIA8 Southern Leyte)


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