By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson is contemplating releasing a new executive order on the return to wearing of face masks after the province recorded a 258.93 percent increase in the number of influenza-like illnesses for this year.
Lacson made the revelation during a private function he hosted for members of the Capitol media on Wednesday night, December 6.
According to Lacson, based on what is happening in neighboring countries, he explained that there might be a call to wear face masks again.
“If, in case, I issue an executive order, I hope the media will support me in explaining why there’s a need to wear face masks,” Lacson said.
Earlier, the Provincial Health Office recorded 2,211 cases of influenza-like illnesses from January to December 2 of this year, higher than the 616 cases logged in the same period in 2022.
Isabela town has the highest number of cases at 1,680.
PHO head Dr. Girlie Pinongan said most of the cases were children.
They are currently attributing the most recent spike of influenza-like cases to the onset of the cold season.
Pinongan advised the public to wear face masks, especially in enclosed spaces, and to immediately consult a doctor if afflicted with the symptoms.
She also reminded the public not to take antibiotics without a doctor’s prescription, adding that most of the influenza-like illnesses can be remedied by simple medicine only./DGB, WDJ