Press Release
October 6, 2011

Legarda to DOH: Assess Health Risks of Floods in Affected Communities

Senator Loren Legarda today called on the Department of Health (DOH) to immediately assess the health risks and impacts of the widespread floods in Luzon.

Legarda said the DOH must closely monitor any possible outbreak of water-borne diseases, such as dengue, diarrhea and leptospirosis in various communities, especially in the provinces of Bulacan, Pampanga, Tarlac and Nueva Ecija, which experienced flooding from typhoon Pedring.

"After losing so much--their loved ones, their homes, or their livelihood--the flood victims cannot afford the added burden of becoming sick. They should be protected from diseases arising from flood like cholera, e-coli, and mosquito-borne diseases. The national and local governments must ensure that their health is preserved," she stressed.

"We do not want a repeat of the leptospirosis outbreak that we experienced during typhoon Ondoy when more than a thousand individuals were afflicted with and at least 89 persons died of the disease," she added.

The Senator also said that the health situation of families in evacuation centers must be monitored since most evacuation areas are densely populated, under unsanitary conditions, and lack access to clean water and health care.

"Communities that have been affected by Typhoons Pedring and Quiel are most likely to be exposed to health threats in evacuation centers. There should be continuous monitoring of the condition of the evacuees and a massive clean-up of flooded communities and evacuation centers must be carried out to avert the outbreak of diseases," Legarda concluded.

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