DOH declares diarrhea outbreak in Biliran town

TACLOBAN CITY, Sept. 8 (PNA) -– The Department of Health (DOH) has declared a diarrhea outbreak in the town of Cabucgayan, Biliran after the water-borne disease has downed 170 residents in the past few days.

The health department tagged contaminated water as the culprit, based on water samples gathered from various sources, including from a water refilling station, which were found positive of coliform bacteria, that is commonly present in human and animal waste.

The local government immediately issued a closure order of the water refilling station, said DOH Eastern Visayas Regional Director Minerva Molon.

At least 21 residents have been admitted in hospitals, but as of Monday, only 11 remained in confinement, according to DOH.

“The good thing is that the local government has been very active. We really learned a lot from diarrhea outbreak experience in Samar,” Molon said.

It can be recalled that the recent diarrhea outbreak killed 81 people and afflicted 9,432 others in Eastern Visayas. Most of the cases were reported in Samar province.

The DOH official suggested the regular monitoring of water sources by local sanitary inspectors and treating them when found unsafe for drinking.

The health department highly recommended the conduct of an education campaign on the importance of safe and sanitary handling of food, washing of foods before cooking, washing of hands before preparing food, cooking food well, and covering it.

Diarrhea is characterized by stomach pain, headache, body weakness and watery stools. The worst effect is dehydration that can cause death. Sarwell Meniano/PNA/