CITY OF CALAPAN –– The mayor of Pola town, Oriental Mindoro has advised residents to maintain the cleanliness of their surroundings after 40 cases of mosquito-borne illness chikungunya had been reported since March.
“This is alarming for a small town like us. Pola has only about 35,000 residents,” Mayor Jennifer Cruz said in a phone interview Wednesday.
The town was last to be hit by COVID-19 in the province, thanks to the early and strict implementation of health measures in 2020.
As of June 6, Pola has 91 COVID-19 cases, of which 84 recovered and four died. Three patients are still battling the disease.
“Residents feared COVID, so now, if they have a fever, they don’t want to go to the health center because it may be tagged as Covid. So chikungunya cases were not prevented earlier through misting,” said Cruz.
Although Chikungunya is not as deadly as dengue, its symptoms are similar, like fever, rashes, headache, nausea, fatigue, and acute and long-term arthritis in several joints.
Cruz said all municipal employees would go out this Friday to help clean up the canals, thus, decreasing breeding areas for mosquitoes, she said.
Leah Reyes, Pola municipal health officer, said the active chikungunya cases in the town are down to nine as of Wednesday after indoor sprays and misting.
But she reminded people to observe cleanliness and to use mosquito nets when sleeping and insect repellant.