covid-19

DAVAO DEL NORTE: Fear of Covid-19 scares off diarrhea outbreak victims from getting hospital treatment

Cases are on the rise in Barangay Tulalian as residents with severe conditions are hesitant to be hospitalized over fear of getting COVID-19

SANTO TOMAS, Davao del Norte (July 18, 2021)—The spurt of diarrhea cases that hit Barangay Tulalian was rising as the municipal government of Santo Tomas logged 124 fresh cases over the weekend, bringing in the total number of diarrhea cases to 295 as of Saturday, July 17.

Municipal Health Officer Dr. June Lim said that residents who fell ill with diarrhea have been forced to leave their homes and decided only to get treatment when their conditions continued to deteriorate.

“Nidaghan ang patients nato kay karon lang sila nigawas sa ilahang mga balay para magpatambal. Napugos na sila adto diri sa makeshift treatment facility kay dehydrated naman sila. Mao na ang rason na padayon ang pagtaas sa mga residente naigo sa diarrhea,” Lim said.

Lim said that sick patients opted to stay home because they’re hesitant to be sent in a hospital over fear that either they would get or be diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing COVID-19.

“Nahadlok sila magadto diri kay ang uban dili sila gusto magpa admit sa hospital kay basig matagdan sila og COVID-19 o i-declare sila na COVID-19 positive. Mao kana ang rason nganong ingon ana ang volume sa patients na atong gitabangan,” Lim said.

124 cases

On Saturday, July 17, the Municipal Health Office (MHO) recorded 124 new cases after residents swarmed the makeshift medical treatment facility installed in the Barangay Tulalian’s covered court

Of the 124 new diarrhea patients, two were children, aged between 0 to 11 month, 20 were children, aged between 1 to 5 years old, 19 were children aged between 6 to 15 years old, 30 were adults, aged between 16 to 25 years old, 28 were adults, aged between 26 to 40 years old, and 25 were adults, aged 40 years old and above.

18 admitted patients

Fifteen patients were admitted at the Metropolitan Community Hospital, eight patients admitted at Estela Medical Clinic, 15 patients were admitted at Rivera Medical Center Inc., and 14 patients were admitted at Matutes Medical Clinic.

COVID-19 diarrhea?

But on Sunday, July 18, the MHO said that 11 patients who fell ill with diarrhea did not have the symptom of dehydration. This prompted the Provincial Health Office of Davao del Norte to recommend that patients should be subjected to a reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to rule out “COVID-19 diarrhea.”

“Mao kini ang development karong adlaw. Pipila ka mga pasyente naay diarrhea pero walay dehydration. Ang advise gikan sa PHO tanang patients na symptomatic ug severe ipailalom sa RT-PCR Test para ma rule out na ang diarrhea na nasinati sa uban ay possible hinungdan ay COVID-19,” Lim said.

The 11 patients registered on Sunday was not yet included in the latest case tally submitted to the PHO as this was a developing scenario happening on the ground

. But Lim said that as early as now, the Santo Tomas LGU is taking a more progressive measures to contain the outbreak in the community such as the strict enforcement of COVID-19 Safety Protocols with Barangay Tulalian COVID-19 Task Force leading the campaign in the community.

Enforcement of protocols

As this developed, Mayor Ernesto Evangelista urged the Barangay Tulalian officials to complement the efforts of the Santo Tomas LGU in the ground as the municipal government is facing health issues in two fronts: the diarrhea outbreak and COVID-19 pandemic.

“Manawagan ko sa tanang opisyales, purok leaders sa Barangay Tulalian na magtinabangay kitang tanan. Dili kita magkompyansa kay duha ka problema atong ginasubang karon ang diarrhea ug ang COVID-19. Naa naman development sa ground na and hinungdan sa diarrhea sa uban kay COVID-19 tungod wala man sila nasinati na dehydration,” Evangelista said.

Evangelista also reminded the Barangay Tulalian residents to boil their drinking water to avoid water-borne diseases. The Santo Tomas LGU, he said, began rationing potable water and tap water for household use in the village since Saturday.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Meanwhile, Municipal Administrator Atty. Elisa Evangelista-Lapiña earlier requested business entrepreneur Mr. Alfonso Mascardo of AquaPure to provide potable water to Barangay Tulalian to prevent a diarrhea outbreak.TADECO’s medical facility also accommodated patients who fell ill with diarrhea, according to Lapiña.

Davao del Norte Governor Edwin Jubahib, and the 2nd District Congresman Alan Dujali also provided medicines, bottled water, and other medical and health support for the patients and the medical personnel who were on the frontline of giving health and sanitation services.

Lapiña thanked Governor Jubahib and Congressman Dujali, AquaPure and TADECO for the assistance and support they extended to the efforts and response of the Santo Tomas LGU in dealing with the diarrhea outbreak.

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