Iloilo City Under State Of Calamity Due To Pertussis Outbreak

A day after the outbreak, Iloilo City is now under state of calamity.

ILOILO CITY has been placed under a state of calamity which was declared a day after pertussis outbreak has been announced.

The entire city of Iloilo is declared under the state of calamity. This announcement was made a day after the pertussis (whooping cough) outbreak. The Sangguniang Panlungsod made this decision during a special session held today, March 26.

Iloilo City
Photo: Andrea Ortega Guanco

This decision was approved through the recommendation of the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

Two resolutions were passed: declaring the outbreak of pertussis and the declaration of a state of calamity due to the disease.

“The City Health Office (CHO)-Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit, as of March 26,  2024, logged a total of 16 cases of pertussis, of which seven are confirmed. These cases are from Molo, Jaro, Arevalo and Lapuz,” the Iloilo City government said in a Facebook post.

The state of calamity status allows the city to use the calamity fund for the procurement of medicines and vaccines for pertussis. The other ways to make and respond against this viral disease can also be done during this time.

As of Tuesday, City Health Office (CHO) assistant department head Dr. Roland Jay Fortuna confirmed 16 cases and seven of which were already positive cases of pertussis.

According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, pertussis or whooping cough “can cause serious illness in people of all ages but is most dangerous for babies”. The early symptoms are runny or stuffed-up nose, low-grade fever, mild and occasional cough, and apnea and cyanosis in babies.

One to two weeks after these early symptoms show up, patients with pertussis can suffer from paroxysms or “rapid, violent, and uncontrolled coughing fits”. These fits lasts for one to six weeks usually but can reach for up to 10 weeks.

According to CDC, coughing fits cause:

  • Make a high-pitched “whoop” sound when they are finally able to inhale at the end of a coughing fit
  • Vomit during or after coughing fits
  • Feel very tired after the fit, but usually seem well in-between fits
  • Struggle to breathe

This is caused by a bacteria called Bordetella pertussis which is only found in humans.

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