Boy, 10, dies from meningococcemia

BATAC CITY, June 5 – A ten-year-old boy from Cagayan province, who was declared to have symptoms of meningococcemia, died recently at the Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital here, government doctors said.

In a media interview, Dr. Jose Orosa III, the hospital’s Officer-In-Charge said the victim was admitted to the hospital at 10:30 pm, Monday night but died two hours later.

The relatives were advised to bury the boy’s cadaver within 12 hours after his death because the disease is highly infectitious, hence, a serious threat to public health in the community.

“Based on the referral [it] was not yet diagnosed as meningococcemia. When the patient came in, there was purpura (blood spots) in the lower extremities.

“The pediatricians were thinking that this could be a case of meningococcemia so the patient right away [was] isolated and given precautions,” Dr. Orosa explained.

Orosa assured the public that there is no cause for alarm saying the hospital was not contaminated contrary to some speculations..

“The public is advised not to panic. Everything is under control…we are following the protocol in handling infectious diseases,” Orosa said.

He added that the attending doctors, medical staff and other employees including the security guard who had direct contact with the victim were given antibiotics, etc.

He further said that the concerned hospital personnel wore protective gears such as the medical cap, face mask, gloves, and clinical gown when they treated the victim.

The disease stems from a bacteria found in the nose, mouth, and throat of a person.

The symptoms of meningococcemia include high fever, headache, stiff neck, drowsiness, dizziness, convulsions, vomiting, unstable vital signs, coughing, and rashes.

Medical experts said the disease’s bacteria is not airborne. (with reports from TV patrol Ilocos)