Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Rabbies Rampant in Iloilo Philippines

The province and city of Iloilo emerged as having the most of rabies cases in Western Visayas, according to the Department of Health regional field office here. 

DOH Regional Director Ariel Valencia said that as of last March 11, there are 28 positive rabies cases registered in the region with Iloilo City posting 11 positive cases of rabies from dog bites. The city also emerges as Number 1 with positive rabies cases in the entire Visayas area. 

The same period showed 1 positive case in Aklan, 2 in Antique, 1 in Capiz, 10 in the province of Iloilo and 3 in Bacolod City, Valencia said. 

DOH reported that 14 deaths due to animal bite and human rabies cases and 19,707 animal bites were registered in 2009, 14 deaths in 2008, 15 in 2007 and 20 in 2006 in the region. 

The province of Iloilo has nine deaths and 9,013 animal bite cases, Aklan with 1 death, 1 death in Capiz and 3 deaths in Negros Occidental. 

Valencia said the Department of Health, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), World Health Organization (WHO), Department of Agriculture and the City Health Office jointly conducted a media launching for the "Rabies-Free Visayas Islands" Tuesday at the Grand Hotel in Iloilo City. 

The affair was also attended by agriculture regional executive director Larry Nacionales, NRPCP coordinator Dr. Victor Atienza, city health officer Dr. Urminico Baronda, city veterinarian Tomas Forteza, district city health officials and DOH regional officials. 

Dr. Raffy Deray, program medical coordinator of the National Rabies Prevention and Control Program (NRPCP) said the project, funded from the BMGF of some million, will cover three countries namely, Tanzania, South Africa and the Philippines.

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