TAGBILARAN CITY – “There are 4,702 missing tuberculosis (TB) cases in Bohol in 2017, which is very alarming” based on Department of Health (DOH) data, Provincial Board Member Jade Acapulco Bautista said in her privilege speech on Friday Bautista, health committee chairperson, explain that missing TB cases is based on the estimated population of a certain province.
“The actual number of reported cases of tuberculosis is deducted from the target and the difference is the missing TB cases,” she said. She said that it means there are still a high number of TB cases that are not yet reported. What probably complicated this health concern is that these unreported persons do not even know they have TB and they might infect others.
She said she learned this from a workshop dubbed, “Orientation on the Philippine Strategic TB Elimination Plan (PhilSTEP) and Province-wide Workshop held at Bohol Tropics Resort Club here spearheaded by the Association of Municipal Health Officers of the Philippines (AMHOP) Bohol chapter and the Provincial Health Office (PHO) during the Valentine’s Day celebration recently.
She said that substantial number of these missing TB cases “come from our jails,” based on a testimony of a representative of Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP). Considering that jails are very congested and the airborne disease is infectious, the number of TB patients in prisons continues to worsen, she said. But AMHOP president Dr. Reina Jane Demadante disputed the data given by DOH’s representative Dr. Pilar Mabasa that the actual number of missing TB cases may not reflect the actual figure (missing cases) sine it was computed based on estimate population not on actual number of inhabitants.
The AMHOP officer insisted that the great number of these persons belonging to having missing TB cases do not live the province anymore. Despite this contention as the number of missing TB cases, Bautista emphasized that there’s indeed a need to raise this public health concern before her colleagues to be able to do something about it. She told The Freeman that she’s set to investigate this in-aid-of-legislation after it was referred to her committee. (rvo)