Borongan declares HFMD outbreak

BORONGAN CITY — The Borongan City Health Office declared an outbreak of Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease following an “unusual rise” in the number of patients that are brought to different health facilities showing symptoms of viral infection.

City Health Officer Dr. Daisy Sacmar, in a memorandum issued on Friday, 10 March declaring the outbreak, said the findings of HFMD infection were determined based on clinical diagnosis since the city has limited testing capacity.

The Borongan City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit has recorded 123 cases of HFMD since January and most of them were patients from Barangays Balud, Bugas, Campesao, Canjaway, Santa Fe and Tabunanan.

The CHO has appealed to barangay officials and the general public to comply with minimum public health standards and other non-pharmaceutical interventions to contain the further spread of infection.

Earlier, the Department of Health in Eastern Visayas warned the public on the surge of FHMD cases in the region affecting mostly male patients from infants to 17 years old particularly in Leyte where most of the cases were detected.

The Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit of DoH-8 said it has recorded a total of 116 HFMD cases from 1 January 2023 to 25 February 2023, a significant 527 percent increase compared to the 22 cases reported during the same period last year.

The health department said most HFMD cases are mild, self-limiting, and non-fatal, but may progress to meningitis, encephalitis, and polio-like paralysis if left unmanaged.

The virus is usually transmitted through contact with nose and throat discharges, the saliva of infected persons, and/or contaminated objects.

Children infected with the virus may experience fever, sore throat, a feeling of being unwell, appearance of painful, red, blister-like lesions on the tongue, gums and insides of the cheeks and blistering on the palms, soles and buttocks.

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