Home Lifestyle Prevent Meningococcemia, practice good personal hygiene – DOH

Prevent Meningococcemia, practice good personal hygiene – DOH


MANILA, Oct. 21 – The Department of Health has called on the public to practice good personal hygiene such as regular handwashing and covering of mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing to prevent the spread of meningococcemia.

This after the DOH had disclosed that two (2) suspected meningococcemia cases, from Laguna and Batangas, were confirmed positive for Neisseria meningitidis based on the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine laboratory results.

The Department is awaiting the laboratory confirmation of five (5) more suspected meningococcemia cases.

“As of the moment, there is no meningococcemia outbreak in the country,” DOH Assistant Secretary of the Public Services Team Maria Rosario Vergiere declared, “as cases are sporadic in nature and are not clustering.”

From January to September 21, 2019, the DOH Epidemiology Bureau has recorded 169 cases with 88 deaths (case fatality rate of 52%). This is slightly higher than the cases recorded in the same period last year, 162 cases with 72 deaths. Most of the cases (79%) reported were not laboratory-confirmed, presenting a gap in confirming the magnitude of the disease.

“We are closely coordinating with our regional office for contact tracing. We are providing post-exposure prophylaxis to close contacts of the patients, and are monitoring them for any signs and symptoms of meningococcemia,” Assistant Secretary Vergiere added.

Meningococcal disease is a rare, but very serious illness caused by a bacteria called Neisseria meningitidis. It presents first with nonspecific signs and symptoms such as cough, headache, and sore throat, followed by upper respiratory symptoms, fever, chills, malaise, nausea, vomiting and skin rashes. It can quickly progress and manifest with lethargy, the difficulty of breathing, neck stiffness, the sensitivity of light, seizures, hemorrhagic eruptions, purpuric and petechial skin lesions, and hypotension. In 15% of the cases, death can occur within a few hours.

Because of the severity and rapid progression of the disease, early diagnosis and immediate treatment with antibiotics are vital.

“I advise individuals experiencing symptoms of meningococcemia to go to the nearest hospital immediately,” Vergiere emphasized.

The disease is spread person-to-person through the exchange of respiratory and throat secretions from coughing, kissing, or sharing of utensils. However, this disease does not spread as easily as common colds or influenza as the bacteria causing the disease cannot survive outside of the human host.

“This is a deadly but highly preventable disease,” Vergeire reiterated. For protection, antibiotic prophylaxis and vaccination can be given to exposed individuals. (DOH)


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -


Marikina opens ‘Sapatos Festival’

By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan   MANILA -- The Marikina City government on Monday officially opened this year’s “Sapatos Festival” at the Freedom Park located in front of...

UST forces rubber match vs. UP in UAAP semis

By Ivan Stewart Saldajeno   MANILA -- University of Santo Tomas (UST) lived to fight another day in the semi-finals of the University Athletic Association of the...

Frabelle Group eyes multi-billion port project in Cadiz City

By  Nanette Guadalquive   BACOLOD CITY -- The Tiu-Laurel family-owned Frabelle Group of Companies has proposed to develop an international port project costing PHP7 billion to 8...

1st NOFA Luzon Cup set Nov. 21-24 in Tarlac

By Jean Malanum   MANILA -- Sixteen teams, including Mindanao champion Bukidnon Football Association, will see action in the 1st Negros Occidental Football Association (NOFA) Luzon Cup...

Phisgoc workforce urged to work hard for SEA Games hosting

By PNA   MANILA -- Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc) chairman, challenged the 527 workers to give their best to assure...