Depression photo (REUTERS/Yuriko Nakao)
MANILA, Philippines – Filipinos should extend support to their friends and loved ones with suicidal tendencies and avoid trivializing mental disorders.
According to the Department of Health (DOH,) suicide is preventable as long as one does not dismiss a person’s depression. The agency explained that depression is a period of sadness that lasts for two weeks and more which causes a person to lose interest in activities once enjoyed.
Health Undersecretary Herminigildo Valle said a depressed person would also prefer to be left alone and have thoughts of self-harm and suicide.
“Almost 90+ percent, may warning signs iyan (have warning signs)…If people start to withdraw from the usual activity or always isolating themselves or even expressing the thought. So it is very important na iyong (that the) companion or family member be aware na ito (that these are) warning signs ng (of) suicide ito,” said Valle
The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that more than 800,000 people die yearly from suicide worldwide. It is the second leading cause of death among 15 to 29 years old.
In the Philippines, more than 2,500 suicide deaths were recorded in 2012 and the DOH is working to prevent this from increasing by opening a hope or suicide hotline.
Since its launch in 2016, they received more than 7,000 calls from depressed persons and 44% of them belong to the age group 13 to 29 years old.
DOH also advised the public to seek help and intervention for people who have signs of depression and history of suicide attempts.
The appeal comes after the high-profile deaths of designer Kate Spade and celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain, both of whom have battled depression prior to their deaths.
“It’s a complex issue but it is preventable…It’s really a sad thing, you think people have everything but if you don’t pay attention, you’ll miss the warning signs,” said Valle.
As of now, the agency continues to monitor “Hopeline” to check the callers’ condition and prevent any suicide attempts. – Aiko Miguel
Garin welcomes probe on the controversial P8.1-B barangay health station project
FILE PHOTO: Former Health Secretary Janette Garin
QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Former Health Secretary Janette Garin said she supports the Department of Health (DOH) in filing a lawsuit on the alleged anomaly surrounding the P8.1 billion barangay health station project of the agency.
Garin added that she is willing to face probe, especially that her name is again being implicated in yet another controversy. However, she appealed to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III to hear her side on the alleged irregularities in the procurement process of the project.
“(The) bottom line here is (that) there is no perfect program but there will always be a solution lalo na kapag inuupuan, tinitignan iyong problema at hinahanapan ng sagot. But if there are violations then, I agree, heads should roll. If there is corruption, heads should also roll. Pero huwag naman po sana agad- agad na nagbibintang, “ Garin argued in a phone interview with UNTV Tuesday, June 19.
( The bottom line here is that, there is no perfect program but there will always be a solution specially if you discuss and assess the problem in search of an answer. But if there are violations then, I agree, heads should roll. If there is corruption, heads should also roll. But they shouldn’t be quick to point fingers at others.)
The Barangay Health Station Project was launched during the Aquino administration when Garin was still the DOH secretary.
The former health chief maintained she is innocent, adding that she welcomes any investigation. She is also ready to present relative documents that will disprove the allegations of an anomaly in the said project. – Aiko Miguel | Marje Pelayo
DOH reminds the public to keep protected from rainy day diseases
Residents wade in a flooded street caused by typhoon Rammasun in Manila, Philippines, 16 July 2014. ( Photoville International)
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Health (DOH) has advised the public to ensure protection against diseases common during rainy season.
“Ngayong season na ito iyon nga, food and water-borne diseases talaga. Among them pinaka-popular talaga ay ang leptospirosis. Ngayong rainy season we should be mindful sa ganitong maruruming tubig,” reminded Dr. Hermigildo Valle of DOH’s Technical Services Cluster.
Aside from leptospirosis, other rainy day diseases include influenza, dengue, diarrhea and skin diseases acquired from exposure to contaminated water.
To prevent diarrhea, DOH advises households to boil tap water before drinking. Also, ensure proper handling and cooking of food to prevent food poisoning. The public is also advised not to wade in floodwater especially with an open wound to prevent infection. Use rain boots and proper rain gears to keep protected.
DOH reminds the public to go to the nearest health center in case one experiences symptoms or signs of leptospirosis. The agency assured that there is medicine available in health centers for such disease and even for influenza.
To avoid contracting dengue, the agency continues to remind the public to keep the surroundings clean and remove all containers that can become breeding grounds for dengue-carrying mosquitoes.
Most importantly, according to DOH, maintain good health, proper hygiene and cleanliness to keep protected from any diseases.
“Have an effort to clean up the environment at the same time protect yourself as a host na hindi ka overwork, well hydrated, well rested ka and if you have sources of vitamins, try to boost up your immune system,” advised Dr. Valle.
DOH also has directed public hospitals to be ready to provide the necessary medical assistance to patients with diseases associated with the rainy season. – Joan Nano / Marje Pelayo