10 May 2021 – Despite being confronted with enormous trials presented by the ongoing coronavirus-2019 pandemic, the city government through the Health Services Office (HSO) continues to deliver basic health services to the public.

This was assured by HSO chief Dr. Rowena Galpo during the May 3 flag-raising rites at City Hall led by Mayor Benjamin Magalong, Rep. Mark Go and Vice-Mayor Faustino Olowan.

HSO chief Dr. Rowena Galpo reported that the leading causes of mortality or death in the Summer Capital last year remains to be non-communicable diseases with cancers topping the list.

Next are vascular and heart diseases with pneumonia, a communicable disease, is fourth while kidney disease is the fifth leading cause of morbidity in the city in 2020, she said.

Meanwhile, the leading causes of morbidity or illnesses in the city last year were upper respiratory tract infections, a communicable disease followed by hypertension, a non-communicable disease.

She said tuberculosis detection rate is still below the 90 percent target but has increased last year to 34 percent from its previous 32 percent.  Tuberculosis treatment success rate is currently at 81 percent.

Galpo warned that the city’s maternal mortality rate has been increasing for the past several years showing a sudden spike from 45.19 percent in 2019 to 67.65 percent in 2020.

“One of the reasons for this could be the fear of going for consultation in health facilities, especially hospitals, due to the pandemic,” she said.

Two birthing facilities were licensed by the HSO last year, Atok Trail and Irisan health centers, with those in Pinsao, Pacdal, Atab and Loakan to follow suit, Galpo added. – Gaby B. Keith