Dengue incidents in NegOr drop during Q1 of 2017

Kapihan sa PIA 2
(L-R) Dr. Socrates Villamor, OIC-Chief Local Support Services of DOH-NIR, Dumaguete City Health Officer Dr. Ma. Sarah Tala and PIA-NegOr Infocen Manager Jenny Tilos

An official from the Department of Health – Negros Island Region (DOH – DOH-NIR) cited a three percent decrease in the number of dengue cases in Negros Oriental recorded within January 1 to June 10, 2017.

Dr. Socrates Villamor, OIC-Chief of Local Health Support Division of DOH-NIR reported during a Kapihan sa PIA forum on June 14 that a total of 914 dengue cases with six deaths were recorded from Jan. 1 to June 10 this year. The said figure is lower than the 946 cases with six deaths recorded in the same period last year.

Dr. Villamor also disclosed that the age range of dengue victims reported in the said period is from two months to 86 years old with a mean age of 19 years old. Moreover, 55% of the dengue victims are male and most of them are aged 21 years old and above.

Dumaguete City Health Officer Dr. Ma. Sarah Tala said the City Health Office (CHO) continuously validates dengue cases reported to them.

Dr. Tala also cited during the Kapihan that there are 230 dengue cases reported within January 1 to June 10 this year but based on CHO’ s community-based surveillance system there are 153 validated cases recorded from January to April  and one each for May and June, respectively. This brings the total number of validated cases to 155 with no fatalities recorded.

On the other hand, the barangay with most number of dengue cases for the same period was reflected in Barangay Banilad with 15 cases, followed by Barangay Camanjac with 14 cases, Barangay Candau-ay with 13 and Barangay Batinguel with 11 cases.

The CHO will further intensify its dengue prevention programs especially since it’s already onset of rainy season and the start of the academic year for schools.

 

Wit 914 dengue cases and six deaths recorded from the period of Jan. 1 to June 10, both Dr. Socrates Villamor and Dr. Ma. Sarah Tala renewed warnings to the public to guard against dengue fever-carrying mosquitoes.

Since June is Denge Awareness Month and June 15 is designated as ASEAN Dengue Day, both health officials urged community participation in the fight against dengue especially with the onset of rainy season and start of the opening of clases. (PIA7-NegOr)

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WATCH: PIA ON Track Video on Ugnayan Forum in Dumagute City

The Philippine Information Agency (PIA) recently conducted an Ugnayan: Dialogue for Progress forum at Silliman University, Dumaguete City to deepen the public’s appreciation on the Philippines’ hosting of ASEAN and to raise their awareness on the thrusts of the government. The activity was attended by representatives of different sectors in Dumaguete City and Negros Oriental. Watch the highlights of the event in this video prepared by PIA- 7:

ON TRACK VIDEO: Ugnayan in Dumaguete City

Brewing soon in local cafes: Baslay coffee of Dauin

By Roi Lomotan

Baslay Coffee Brewing and Tasting 1
Samples of Baslay coffee on display during the coffee brewing and tasting event. (PIA7-NegOr)

 

NEGROS ORIENTAL (PIA) – The aroma of freshly brewed Baslay coffee will soon spread to the coffee shops in the capital city of Dumaguete or at resort cafés in the municipality of Dauin.

This after the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) – Negros Oriental hosted a coffee brewing and tasting event in Dumaguete City recently to encourage local resort and café owners to buy and support the locally grown coffee.

“The purpose of this is to invite local resorts in Dauin and coffee shops to carry this coffee,” DTI SME Senior Trade and Industry Specialist Maribel Sumanoy said.

During the activity, resort and coffee owners were given a free taste of Baslay Coffee which comes in two varieties: Arabica and Robusta.

Sumanoy shared that in the 2nd Coffee Conference held in Baguio City, DTI sent samples of Baslay coffee to be evaluated and it had a high cupping grade which is good for specialty coffee.

Baslay coffee was cultivated by the Baslay Farmers Association (BFA), a recipient of DTI’s Shared Service Facility (SSF) Project.

Last year, the DTI turned over units of dehaulers, depulpers, dehumidifiers, sorting tables to association and also sponsored trainings on coffee harvesting, dry method processing and understanding standards and grading system.

Sumanoy said that through these interventions, members will have a competitive edge and will be able to demand a better price when selling their coffee beans to the market.

Baslay coffee Brewing and tasting 2
DTI-Negros Oriental Senior Trade and Industry Specialist Maribel Sumanoy stands beside a coffee maker that brews Baslay coffee. (PIA7-NegOr)

The coffee plantation is nestled near Mt. Talinis with an elevation of 800 meters above sea level up to 1,200 meters above sea level.

The development coffee plantation was a reforestation project of the Philippine National Oil Company (now Energy Development Corporation or EDC) to give livelihood assistance to former kaingineros in the area.

“Before 1984, we were all forest occupants. We were all forest destroyers of Baslay forests,” said BFA Adviser Ruel Perez.

Perez continued that sometime in 1984, they were organized into an informal group and in this process, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Philippine National Oil Company started to realize that there is a prevailing problem with the community.

“Of course the destruction of the forest because we were practicing these destructive farming practices – we called it the maganas. You have to clear this forested area so you can plant corn and your first and second harvest will be adundant. Along the way, after 3 to 4 years, when there is a decline in harvest, you look for another area to deforest. That’s how we do it. It’s our way of life that is exhausting but there is no success,” Perez explained.

It was in 1986 when different government agencies and the New Zealand government gave the community a funding for agro-forestry project.

In 1988, the group was registered with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) making it a legitimate organization and in 1989 the BFA was launched with 135 founding members.

By 1992, the group was awarded a community forest stewardship agreement for 25 years and they were given the opportunity to manage and protect the forest of Baslay.

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BFA Adviser Ruel Perez delivering his message (PIA7-NegOr)
Baslay Coffee Brewing and tasting 5
Dauin Mayor Neil Credo delivers his message to Baslay coffee farmers. (PIA7-NegOr)

All those years, BFA was into coffee production and from being kaingineros, they eventually became coffee farmers and forest conservationists.

Perez said the group practices organic farming and they do not apply synthetic fertilizers and pesticides in their crops.

“Everything there, the animals, the birds they all contribute to the pollination that’s why our coffee has a very nice flavor coffee. Our coffee needs forest to grow and have a very nice flavor,” Perez said.

Sumanoy said BFA originally had a 70-hectare plantation and they had just had a 50-hectare expansion.

Perez disclosed they hope to cover a 300-hectare expansion in five years.

Meanwhile, Sumanoy disclosed that as of now, BFA has one buyer in based in Manila and that is the reason why DTI held the activity to help BFA introduce to the local market in Negros Oriental the Baslay Coffee.

“In Negros we don’t have a market yet. So we are introducing it. The trend today like in Bo’s Coffee is to carry in their coffee shops local coffee. They are carrying Mt. Apo, Benguet, and Kalinga Coffee. Now we are introducing themthat since you are in Dumaguete, you carry Baslay coffee,” Sumanoy said.

 

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DTI staff gives free taste of Baslay coffee to resort and cafe owners during the event. (PIA7-NegOr)

The DTI official added that they requested the farmer’s association to retain at least 20 percent of their produce for the consumption of local market here.

 

Sumanoy said that BFA was able to harvest 3,200 kilograms or 16,000 red cherries and then processed it to 3,200 green coffee beans last year.

He hopes that through this endeavor, local coffee shops and resorts will be encouraged to brew and serve local Baslay coffee. (ral/PIA7-Negros Oriental)