By Karen Boncocan
MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Health Center for Health Development Metro Manila Regional Director Eduardo Janairo revealed on Wednesday that there are 83 confirmed cases of A(H1N1) in Muntinlupa City.
He said the health department’s National Epidemiology Center (NEC) reported a total of 83 laboratory confirmed A(H1N1) cases in the said city from January 1 to November 5 this year.
Janairo added that there have been no fatalities from the pandemic A(H1N1) reported.
There are 109 cases in the National Capital Region, according to the DOH-CHD-MM.
He also warned the public against going to crowded places “as the virus spread easily in closed contained areas because it is air-borne.”
But Janairo clarified that there was no need for panic, saying that “the influenza virus is now treated as an ordinary flu and it can be treated by Oseltamivir, an over-the-counter drug that is available in major drugstores.”
“Before taking any medicine, it is still best to seek the advice of a doctor if you are manifesting flu-like symptoms in order to be given the proper medication,” Janairo reminded.
The DOH-CHD-MM warned that although some A(H1N1) cases could be treated at home like common flu, some patients with underlying conditions require hospitalization such as those who are pregnant or malnourished, or those with progressive symptoms and pre-existing conditions like asthma, heart disease, diabetes, and those with HIV or TB.
Other cities with confirmed A(H1N1) cases were: Valenzuela and Pasig with 5 confirmed cases each, Paranaque with 4 cases; Makati, Malabon and Taguig with 2 cases each; Mandaluyong, Marikina, Pasay and Quezon City with 1 case each.
Janairo said that majority of the patients were male and around 1 to 4 years of age.
The World Health Organization reported in 2009, a worldwide influenza pandemic caused by the new strain of swine-origin H1N1 known as the swine flu virus.
A(H1N1), the DOH-CHD-MM said, is a highly infectious disease caused by a virus which mutated out of four different strains of the influenza A virus found in pigs, humans and birds.