The City Government of Baguio has initiated an investigation following reports of an increase in acute gastroenteritis cases, potentially associated with contaminated water in multiple establishments.
As of Tuesday at noon, the City Health Services Office (CHSO) has recorded at least 350 cases of acute gastroenteritis since December 21, 2023.
Acting City Health Officer Celia Flor Brillantes mentioned in a statement that their department has taken steps, including water sampling and testing, to tackle the illness.
Brillantes advised establishments to avoid serving tap and filtered water and instead provide only purified or bottled water to customers as a safety precaution while waiting for the test results.
“We are hoping that all food establishments will cooperate to help ensure the safety of their customers and prevent more incidents,” she said.
She emphasized the importance of caution for every household, suggesting avoiding drinking tap water directly, and urged residents to seek immediate medical advice if experiencing symptoms of acute gastroenteritis.
It’s recommended for the public to drink purified or bottled water when eating out in restaurants or other food establishments.
“We are encouraging households na may cases din sa families nila to also report, in case they have incidents like this. We are also advising households to also take precautionary measures to not use muna the tap water and ‘yung filter system nila, just use muna purified water or if not they can boil muna,” Aileen Refuerzo, Baguio City Public Information Officer, said.
Meanwhile, in a statement released by SM City Baguio, they are proactively implementing measures to safeguard the well-being of everyone involved, considering a potential health issue that has been reported not just within the mall but also in surrounding areas.
“As part of [our] periodic comprehensive water testing, we are collaborating with the local City Health Office to conduct immediate tests for the mall and among its tenants to promptly identify any potential risks,” the mall management said.