12 Zika virus cases reported in Visayas

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ILOILO CITY: Despite preventive measures, this city continues to be threatened by the spread of the Zika virus brought about by mosquito bites as the Department of Health (DOH) said three more cases were reported here.

The three new Zika cases this week added to the list of confirmed incidents in the country for 2016, making it a total of 12 cases and all reported in the month of September.

Of the 12 cases, eight were women with ages ranging from nine to 55 years old, according to tests conducted at the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM).

Ten of these cases were from Region VI, Western Visayas and one each from Region VII, Central Visayas and National Capital Region (Metro Manila).


The previously reported case from Laguna province was traced to Muntinlupa City, Metro Manila upon verification.

Among the cases from Region VI, nine were from Iloilo City and one from Oton, a few kilometers outside Iloilo City, an RITM report showed.

DOH Regional Director Marlyn Convocar disclosed that quick response teams were sent to affected areas to investigate and recommend specific measures to prevent further spread of the virus.

All patients have fully recovered.

Iloilo City is carrying out indoor residual spraying coupled with fogging in affected and high-risk areas to reduce adult mosquito density.

The DOH reiterated its appeal to local government units to be more vigorous in searching and destroying mosquito breeding sites, commonly seen inside and around homes.

It said pregnant women may use insect repellent or mosquito nets at daytime to avoid mosquito bites and potential Zika infection.

Zika can be mistaken for measles, dengue or chikungunya.
A laboratory test is needed to confirm cases.

Pregnant women should follow the advice of their doctors on risks associated with Zika and on ways to prevent vector infection.

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