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Pertussis Outbreak Grips Philippines: 49 Fatalities Recorded


The Department of Health (DOH) disclosed on Tuesday that the Philippines has experienced a significant surge in pertussis, or whooping cough, cases, with a total of 862 reported cases from January 1 to March 23, 2024. Here are some details according to the report of ABS-CBN News.

Affected Regions

The regions most heavily affected by pertussis infections include Metro Manila, Mimaropa, Central Luzon, Central Visayas, and Western Visayas, according to the DOH.

Tragically, the number of deaths attributed to pertussis has climbed to 49 within the same period, underscoring the severity of the outbreak.

Ongoing Surveillance and Response

The DOH emphasized that the reported figures may still fluctuate due to delayed consultations and reporting. Efforts to contain the outbreak, including increased immunization initiatives, may take several weeks to manifest in the data.

The pertussis outbreak in the Philippines mirrors similar trends observed in other nations, such as the United Kingdom, where a sharp rise in cases has been noted. This underscores the global challenge posed by the highly transmissible nature of the bacterial infection.

Understanding Pertussis

Pertussis, known locally as “tusperina” and “ubong-dalahit,” is a contagious bacterial illness that can be life-threatening, particularly for vulnerable populations such as infants and young children. The infection spreads easily through respiratory droplets expelled during coughing or sneezing.

As the pertussis outbreak continues to unfold, it is imperative for health authorities to intensify surveillance, vaccination efforts, and public awareness campaigns to mitigate the spread of the disease and prevent further loss of life. Collaboration between government agencies, healthcare providers, and the community will be essential in effectively combating this public health crisis.

Read Also: Pertussis Cases Surge Across the Philippines as Iloilo City Declares State of Calamity


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