Rainy season, dengue may snarl COVID-19 fight: Cebu doctor


Posted at Jul 01 2020 08:33 AM

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MANILA — The rainy season and dengue cases may stretch medical resources during the coronavirus pandemic, a doctor in Cebu City, where cases of the respiratory disease are increasing, warned Wednesday.

Colds and pneumonia, cases of which typically increase during the rainy season, might be confused with cases of COVID-19, said Dr. Rene Bullecer of non-profit group Human Life International.

Dengue cases could also increase with children currently staying at home during the summer break, said Bullecer. He urged the public to remove container of stagnant water, where dengue-carrying mosquitoes might lay eggs.

The health department earlier said it had "no scientific data" supporting the hypothesis that the novel coronavirus and dengue virus can interact and create worse symptoms.

However, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said dengue leads to respiratory complications while COVID-19 attacks the lungs.

Cebu City has the highest COVID-19 tally in the country, with 4,639 cases as of Monday. Of this figure, 987 were tallied in the last 14 days, according to the health department.

About half of these cases had recovered and patients with severe to critical symptoms were typically discharged within a week or 2, said Bullecer.

While the situation is still "manageable", more nurses should be on standby in Cebu City, he suggested.

Watch the doctor's full interview here.

TeleRadyo, July 1, 2020