MANILA, Philippines – All 29 victims of food poisoning in Makilala, Cotabato were already discharged from the hospital.
According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), evacuees from Barangay Malabuan suffered stomach pains followed by vomiting after eating pastel that was part of the donated food packages in the evacuation center.
To prevent the incident from happening again, authorities improved security measures at checkpoints to ensure the quality of food being delivered to the evacuees.
The agency also called on all donors to make sure that food donations are properly prepared and packed to prevent spoilage.
“Hindi naman po natin masisisi ang kung sino man dito sa nangyari (We can’t blame anyone for what happened),” Timbal said.
“But we will do our best to ensure (that this won’t happen again),” he added.
Meanwhile, the national government is sending additional funds for the rehabilitation of earthquake-affected towns in Mindanao.
Earlier on Wednesday (November 6), Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana together with Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and Interior Secretary Eduardo Año visited Kidapawan City Provincial Capitol to check on the situation.
Lorenzana said local chief executives are asking for additional budget as they have already used up most of their calamity fund.
Apart from rehabilitation, the national government also provided for the relocation of the victims who lost their homes from the earthquake. – MNP (with details from Harlene Delgado)
The Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday maintained that Dengavaxia is not the answer to the problem of the high incidence of dengue in the country.
DOH spokesperson and Officer in Charge of the Food and Drug Administration, Usec. Eric Domingo explained that dengue is not like any other disease where vaccination is the only solution.
He stressed that Dengvaxia is still not a registered drug in the country and its efficacy is not yet fully proven.
“This vaccine is not for an outbreak response. It’s designed for future use sa mga taong nagka- dengue na dati [for people who have had dengue before],” Domingo said.
A World Health Organization (WHO) report showed that “Dengvaxia was first licensed in Mexico in December 2015 for use in individuals 9-45 years of age living in endemic areas, and is now licensed in 20 countries.”
It was then used in 11 countries in 2016, including the Philippines.
But it was only in September 2018 that the WHO recommended that Dengvaxia be only administered to children who were previously infected with dengue, adding that it is dangerous for those who have not yet gotten the disease.
This caused among the public, as well as, experts as the Philippines is the only country who had used Dengvaxia vaccination on a wider scope, with more than 800,000 children inoculated.
The DOH maintained that there is still no concrete study to date that claimed that children who are vaccinated with Dengvaxia will never be infected with dengue.
“It’s very difficult because you’re tested and then you’re positive but you’re actually false positive. Then if you give the Dengvaxia, who knows that the severe dengue reaction will not occur in a particular individual. So, there’s a risk, in other words,” DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said. (with details from Aiko Miguel) /mbmf
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