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Bacolod City, Philippines Friday, May 1, 2009
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City readies vs.
deadly virus

BY CHRYSEE SAMILLANO

Acting Bacolod Mayor Jude Thaddeus Sayson signed an executive order creating the City Task Force Against Swine Influenza Virus yesterday.

“The impact of the SIV on the economy and the disruption of the lives of people in affected areas is so severe that we must be proactive against its spread, and should suspected cases be identified, be ready to respond to the situation,” Sayson said in hisexecutive order.

The task force will be composed of Sayson as chairman, City Health Officer Dr. Salome Biñas, vice chairman, and Councilor Napoleon Cordova, chairman of the Sangguniang Panlungsod Committee on Health, Councilor Diosdado Valenzuela, president of the Association of Barangay Captains, and City Veterinarian Dr. Adelo Daroy, members.

 It will also include representatives from the Department of Health,  Philippine Society of Infectious Disease, Philippine Medical Association, Bacolod City Police Office, and the Infectious Disease Consultant of the Corazon Locsin Montelibano Memorial Regional Hospital.

The task force will recommend and set-up preventive measures against the spread of the SIV, including the implementation of a monitoring mechanism to identify and keep track of the virus and possible suspected cases.

It will plan an extensive information campaign that will educate people about SIV, help them identify its symptoms and how to respond to SIV cases and to prevent the spread of the virus, as well as, set-up an SIV hotline in the city.

Sayson said he will call the task force for a meeting on Monday.

He said the SIV can be spread by human traffic and this should be prevented at entry points like seaports and airports.

According to the reports on CNN, persons infected by the SIV are those who have been to Mexico or live there, Sayson said.

“I think this problem should be concentrated on by the national government through our ports of entry. There should be monitoring of persons coming in through all entry points,” he said.

Sayson said that through the executive order, they willcome up with an action plan and will monitor points of entry in Bacolod against SIV.

 He said he has instructed Biñas to coordinate with Provincial Health Officer Dr. Luisa Efren.*CGS

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