To help combat the spread of dengue in the city, the City Health Office (CHO) will be strictly implementing Ordinance No. 0401-20, Series of 2020, which mandates the creation of a Dengue Task Force within Barangays as well ,as penalizing individuals found to have breeding sites of mosquitoes in their homes.

Under the ordinance, according to Ms. Melodina Babante, Coordinator of the Tropical Disease Prevention and Control Division of the CHO, violators will be fined Php 1000 and a two-day community service for the first offense. A fine amounting to Php 3000 and a 4-hour community service will be given for the second offense; while for the third offense, a Php 5000 and a 4-hour community service will be given to the violator.

Moreover, the CHO along with the City Mayor’s Office (CMO) will also be conducting a simultaneous clean-up drive in barangays every 2nd and 4th Friday of the month.

Babante said that this is part of their efforts in intensifying the fight against dengue, especially after monitoring showed that the majority of the cases recorded were acquired in the community.

“Based sa amoang observation sa mga household surveillances, naa gyud sa community nagagikan ang mga kaso (Based on our observation, household surveillances showed that the infection was acquired in the communities),” she said in an interview with the Madayaw Davao.

Several schools were also found to have breeding sites for Aedes mosquitoes.

In 2023, the CHO saw an increase in the number of dengue cases in the city compared to 2022. According to Babante, the office recorded a total of 6, 252 confirmed dengue cases in the city from January–December of this year. This is 65.4% higher than the previous year’s record of 3, 758 confirmed cases.

The dengue mortality rate in the city also increased from 21 deaths in 2022 to 51 recorded deaths from January to December of 2023.

“Ang amoang surveillances ug monitoring, gipakusgan namo, gi-intensify namo mao nga daghan pud ang mga kaso sa dengue nga nahibaluan nato or naitala nato sa atoang records (We have intensified our surveillance and monitoring which contributed to the increase in our recorded number of cases),” Babante explained.

The CHO continues to urge the public to practice the 5S strategy to combat the spread of the disease.

Dabawenyos are advised to search and destroy possible breeding sites of mosquitoes in their homes; to immediately seek medical assistance instead of waiting for the symptoms to worsen; to practice self-protection measures including the use of mosquito repellent and mosquito nets; to support the fogging and misting programs, but to also not rely solely on it; as well as to sustain hydration to patients.

The CHO also asked for the cooperation of Dabawenyos in fighting the spread of Dengue in the city. Babante also urged the public to follow the ordinance, and for Barangays to create their own Dengue Task Force. CIO