West Visayas gears up for battle vs. soil-borne parasites

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ILOILO CITY: The Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday is bracing for massive war on worms (WOW) through reduction in the prevalence of soil-transmitted helminth worms and scaling up parasitic worm control and other neglected tropical diseases in the whole Visayas.

DOH Assistant Secretary Dr. Paulyn Jean Rosell Ubial said that the Health department has already started delivery to the provinces of some 2.5 million tablets of albendazole and praziquantel mass drug administration against soil transmitted helminth and schistosomiasis for school children throughout Visayas.

The children will be twice given the drug for deworming, first in January 2014 and the second is in July 2014, Ubial said.

DOH, in cooperation with the Department of Education (DepEd), will lead in the mass drug administration in schools, day care centers and health centers for the young children with ages two to 16 years old.


Ubial said that deworming is a very effective intervention to improve children’s lives. This must be augmented by environmental sanitation and safe water supply including nail cutting, tooth brushing, removal of lice and personal hygiene of the children.

The program is covered by the universal health care of President Benigno Aquino 3rd with a Visayas target of 10-million poor families classified under the National Household Targeting System (NHTS).

In Region 6, DOH is honoring WOW champions composed of individuals with outstanding contributions to the successful implementation of the program in the provinces and served as role models in other regions.

The WOW champions are Julian Ambay, DepEd district supervisor of Pandan, Antique; Maripaz Song, PTA federation president of Guimaras; Myline Cornel, DepEd district supervisor of Calatrava II, Negros Occidental; Dr. Felicito Lozarita, provincial health officer of Guimaras; and Dr. Samuel Delfin, provincial health officer of Capiz.

Outstanding WOW partners are the provincial health offices of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo, Guimaras, Negros Occidental, city health offices of Bacolod and Iloilo City; and the DepEd division of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, Negros Occidental, Bacolod and Iloilo City.

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