HEALTH HAZARD: DOH warns of adverse health effects from oil spill

first_imgAccording to Sta. Lucia, the top three leading causes of health complaints in evacuation centers were difficulty of breathing, nasal congestion and sore throat. ILOILO City – Harsh fumes from the bunker fuel that spilled from a power barge in Barangay Bo. Obrero, Lapuz district pose serious health threats, the Department of Health (DOH) Center for Health Development in Western Visayas cautioned coastal residents adversely affected by the July 3 oil spill. * Consult the doctor if symptoms do not improve * Nasal irritation and nausea may be experience To ensure health and nutrition of affected residents, the DOH-6 also forwarded recommendations to the City Health Office. These were the following: * Pregnancy tests kit should be made available * Stay away from the area when you see or smell oil on the beach * Anticipation and management of communicable diseases * Prolonged contact may cause skin reddening, edema and burning For adolescents   * Provide flu vaccination * Good hygiene practices * Regular check-ups for senior –BP blood, sugar check-up The latest Philippine Coast Guard estimate of the volume of bunker oil that spilled out of the ruptured tank of AC Energy’s power barge in Bo. Obrero was at 251,000 liters, reaching as far as Guimaras’ coastal barangays and the northern coastal towns of Leganes and Dumangas in Iloilo province. * Ensure ready emergency transport vehicle * Ensure prepositioning of family planning commodities * Stays indoors in an air-conditioned area and avoid strenuous outdoor activity * Restrict movement outside * Do not use oil-contaminated water for human or animal consumption * wear protective gear like gowns, gloves, boots and goggles For women with partners but are not pregnant * Prevention of abuse * Ensure adequate lighting * Effects on skin may worsen by subsequent exposure to UV rays from the sun * Separate toilets and bath for boys and girls or 1 room per family * Ensure safety from abuse or rape * Informed consent and volunteerism when counseling and providing family planning methods * Do not fish in oil spill-affected waters The DOH-6 also presented ways to cope up with the oil spill. These were the following: * Ensure their pre-natal package is provided For senior citizens * Injury prevention for children-adult supervision at all times * Do not eat fish, shellfish and other seafood from the area with oily residue or fish that has petroleum odor For Children These residents of Barangay Bo. Obrero, Lapuz, Iloilo City help in the cleanup operation of the oil spill from Power Barge 102. Prolonged exposure the spilled bunker oil may bring adverse health effects, the Department of Health warns. IAN PAUL CORDERO/PN For responders and clean-u workers: These 255 families were made up of 931 individuals who temporarily moved to four evacuation centers. Sta. Lucia urged the public to avoid eating fish, shellfish and other seafood from areas with oily residue or seafood with petroleum odor. * Repeated exposure may cause upper respiratory tract conditions * Avoid contact with sediment, sand, soil, or outdoor/indoor surfaces with visible oil contamination According to Sta. Lucia, adverse health effects from harsh fumes of spilled bunker oil can be avoided if warnings are diligently heeded For infants * Provision of malong to mothers * Set-up a safe space by setting up a women and child protection desk (to be coordinated with PNP) * Prevent pets from entering oil-contaminated areas As of July 8, the number of families in Barangay Bo. Obrero adversely affected by the oil spill reached 255, according to the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO). * Acute inhalation may lead to euphoria, vertigo, headache and chest pain Sta. Lucia listed negative health effects of spilled bunker oil. These were the following: * dispose used gloves properly For pregnant women   * Wash skin which has come in contact with oil-contaminated water, with soap and water * Do not swim in areas affected by the oil spill * If possible pregnant women should have another venue where they can be protected from COVID-19 * If possible senior citizens to be accommodated on lower floor to prevent falls from stairs an slipping from wet area * Remind seniors on their maintenance medicines “Affected families and individuals in Bo. Obrero and nearby areas are advised to stay away from the area especially if oil is evident,” according to Dr. May Ann Soliva-Sta. Lucia, head of DOH-6’s health emergency management staff. * Triage, check exposure, database immunization review at heath center * Immunization * wash oiled clothing and goggles after each clean-up operation She assured health protocols such as physical distancing are enforced in evacuation centers to prevent transmission of coronavirus disease 2019./PNlast_img

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