DOH calls for healthy athletes
The Department of Health-Cordillera called for vigilance against air, water, and vector-borne diseases to ensure the safety of athletes who will converge in Baguio City for the Cordillera Administrative Region Athletic Association (Caraa) Meet 2020 in February.
Dr. Anachris Kilakil of DOH-Cordillera asked medical teams to be on guard against communicable and water and vector-borne illnesses to ensure the health and safety of athletes who will participate in the Caraa Meet.
More than 6,000 athletes and coaches are expected to converge in the city for the largest sporting event for public schools.
Kilakil, who represented DOH Regional Director Amelita Pangilinan during the press conference and commitment signing of stakeholders for the Caraa Meet, said they have been doing advocacies among coaches for them to be aware of the symptoms of communicable diseases that might be present among the athletes so they could implement early interventions.
“Dapat alam natin kung sinong athlete ang may symptoms so that if there is a need to quarantine them, we could so do earlier,” she said.
Among the communicable diseases the DOH are guarding against are measles-rubella and respiratory and influenza-like diseases. Kilakil said these diseases are highly contagious because they are transmitted through air.
The DOH also asked the billeting schools to ensure sanitation to prevent water-borne diseases such as acute bloody diarrhea and typhoid and vector-borne illnesses such as dengue and chikungunya fever, which are transmitted by infected mosquitoes.
Kilakil said the DOH is willing to provide further advocacies for the Caraa delegates and are ready to help the City Health Services Office and other volunteer groups in conducting daily surveillance of disease during the regional sports meet.
She asked the billeting schools to “sweep” their areas to make sure that there are no breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
Department of Education-Baguio OIC-Assistant Schools Division Superintendent Soraya Faculo said they have tapped the assistance of various medical and rescue volunteer groups to ensure the health and safety of Caraa delegates.
“We have also tapped the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council to put up an incident command center and tapped medical teams to be assigned in every billeting school,” Faculo said.
Eleven schools in the city have been tapped to accommodate Caraa delegates.
DepEd-Cordillera Information Officer Gearaloy Palao-ay said coaches have been told not to bring the athletes to the main sports event if they see symptoms of illnesses in them during the training to prevent them from infecting other athletes.
The DepEd and the DOH have enhanced proactive measures against diseases to prevent a repeat of last year’s experience when several Caraa delegates in Apayao suffered from diarrhea. – Jane B. Cadalig