By Grace Santos with reports from Michael Angelo Baluyot
CITY of BALANGA, Bataan – As the entire nation celebrates Christmas and New Year’s Day, the Provincial Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (PESU) of the Bataan Provincial Health Office (PHO) monitors the number of firecracker related injury cases in the whole province.
“From December 21, 2015 to January 5, 2016, a total of 74 firecracker related injuries were noted. This number is 10% higher compared to the same period last year (67 cases). Ages of victims range from 4 yrs. old to 54yrs old. Majority (86%) of the cases were males,” said Michael Angelo Baluyot, PESU Nurse of PHO.
Also, according to Mr. Baluyot, the area with the most number of cases is Mariveles with 17 cases (23%) followed by Limay with 10 cases (14%), Balanga City and Orani with 8 cases (11%), Dinalupihan with 7 cases (9%), Samal with 6 cases (8%) Bagac, Hermosa and; Morong with 4 cases (5%), Orion with 3 cases (4%) Abucay with 2 cases (3%) and Pilar with 1 case (1%) respectively. Majority of the victims suffered from blast/burn injuries. No case of amputation was documented.
The most common firecracker used was Piccolo (67%) followed by Lusis (10%). All cases had active involvement in using/lighting of the firecracker that caused the injury. During the said surveillance, no Watusi/firecracker ingestion and stray bullet injury was reported.
“With the upsurge of these cases the Provincial Government of Bataan thru the Bataan Provincial health Office in collaboration with DOH yearly launches anti-firecracker injury campaigns to lessen the risk of injuries brought about by firecrackers.
This year’s theme is “Sa paputok may disgrasya, Ito po ang ebidensya. Oplan Iwas Paputok Fireworks Display ang Patok”. This campaign portrays the harms and outcomes of firecracker thru visual posters and materials showing injuries brought about by firecrackers. It also encourages all to participate in community fireworks display and advises the general public to be vigilant and wary on the harms of firecrackers,” Baluyot noted.
Photo courtesy of Jemuel Bornolia