By Chito Chavez
Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo M. Año on Wednesday called on local government units (LGUs) to strictly enforce the Enhanced 4S Strategy in their areas after the Health Department declared a national dengue epidemic.
“Enhanced 4S” stands for (1) search and destroy breeding sites; (2) seek early consultation; (3) self-protection; and (4) say Yes to fogging only in hotspot areas where increase is registered for two consecutive weeks.
At the community level, all mayors and barangay officials were urged to spearhead the following activities:
- Activate the Aksyon Barangay Kontra Dengue.
- Synchronize the conduct of the 4 o’clock habit or the simultaneous cleaning of the household and community surroundings, getting rid of stagnant water and other mosquito-breeding sites, and conduct of measures to prevent water stagnation every day, starting at 4:00 pm.
- Facilitate chemical intervention, such as spraying and larviciding or the regular application of microbial or chemical insecticides to water bodies or water containers to kill mosquito larvae and pupae.
- Encourage residents to observe early consultation.
Año issued the call citing the gravity of the dengue situation in the country.
He insisted the LGUs should work closely together “because the health of our people is at stake’’.
“Local government officials are therefore advised to coordinate with their respective DOH Regional Office (Center for Health Development) in carrying out initiatives to prevent dengue,’’Año said.
The DILG chief stressed “it is also necessary to reproduce and disseminate DOH information materials about dengue to inform and alert the public on how they can help prevent the spread of the disease in their respective communities’’.
To ensure that those afflicted with dengue are taken cared of, Año said the LGUs should oversee the preparedness of Rural Health Units (RHUS) and LGU-operated hospitals and ensure the availability of adequate logistics in the local health facilities, such as Oresol, non-structural protein 1 based rapid diagnostic tests (NS1 RDT), larvicides and medicines.
He noted ambulances should also be at the ready to provide emergency transport for patients during referrals.
“At this time when a lot of lives are endangered by dengue, there is no room for LGUs to be lax or negligent. I, therefore, urge our local government officials to take into heart the mandate of the Local Government Code that every LGU shall ensure and support, among other things, the promotion of health and safety and preserve the comfort and convenience of their constituents,’’ he concluded.