DOH steps up TB screening in Cordillera communities


BAGUIO CITY (PIA) — The Department of Health in the Cordillera (DOH-CAR) is stepping up its campaign to end tuberculosis (TB) infections in the region with early diagnosis and proper treatment.
The DOH targets screening 56,771 individuals from different parts of the Cordillera in 2024 through a TB caravan. Using the donated mobile clinic (TB van) from the Philippine Business for Social Progress, they conduct chest X-rays and TB screenings down to the community level.
The TB van is AI-equipped and can readily detect TB.
This March, the TB caravan’s schedule includes Sagada and Besao in Mountain Province; Pudtol in Apayao; Loakan in Baguio City; Pilar, Lacub, Peñarubia, and Tubo in Abra; Itogon, Benguet; and Kiangan, Lagawe and Mayoyao in Ifugao.
The TB caravan also went to La Trinidad in Benguet, and City Camp barangay in Baguio City on March 12 and 13, respectively, during the commemoration of World TB Day.
DOH Nurse Joycelyn Rillorta emphasized during a recent media forum here that TB can be fatal, but is curable if detected early.
TB symptoms include coughing for two weeks, an unexplainable fever, excessive sweating at night and sudden loss of weight or skinning.
TB treatment can last up to six months with the medicines given free in government health facilities, and through accredited private health partners of DOH.
Rillorta said the 6-month treatment regimen must be taken religiously for the patient not to move up to a drug resistant TB case, which treatment can be last as long as 18 months.
In the Cordillera, there are 4,766 drug susceptible TB cases with Baguio City, Abra, and Kalinga topping the list. There are also 59 cases of drug resistant TB, she said. **CCD/PIA CAR


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