Simple Leptospirosis Prevention: Boots for Farmers
One of the highlighted Bridging Leadership Projects is the Leptospirosis prevention program of the PCP Western Visayas Panay chapter entitled, “Magpangaman gamit ang BOTA, Leptospirosis matana ta.” This is one of the projects chosen by the PCP Foundation, as the chapter provides a simple yet practical solution to their local community issues.
Farmers are considered the backbone of our nation as they produce the food served on our tables. Though they play a crucial role, farmers’ welfare and health are often overlooked. Farming involves multiple health risks, and PCP Western Visayas Panay devised a program that aims to have a significant medical impact on the farming community in Cabatuan.
The Cabatuan municipality can be found in the province of Iloilo, roughly 24 kilometers from the provincial capital. The 2020 census reported that there are 61,110 residents in Cabatuan. Most of the territory is used for agriculture, and its abundant crops are rice, corn, sweet potato, taro, and cassava.
Based on the data gathered from the Department of Health, Cabatuan has a high incidence of leptospirosis in the last decade. This disease is most common during the rainy season due to flood waters, which often contain the urine of animals carrying the bacterial disease. These animals can include but are not limited to cattle, pigs, horses, dogs, rodents, and wild animals.
However, it was observed that in Cabatuan, significant levels of leptospirosis persisted even during the dry season. Further observation shows that most people who get leptospirosis in Cabatuan are farmers, and they contracted the disease due to their work in the fields. Kidney failure, meningitis, liver failure, respiratory distress, and even death are all possible outcomes of untreated leptospirosis.
In order to combat the spread of the disease, the PCP Western Visayas-Panay Chapter proposed a leptospirosis prevention campaign. The farmers will be provided with lectures on leptospirosis prevention and proper protective equipment (PPE) cleaning and storage guidelines. In addition, the farmers will also be given protective gear to use. After one year, the farmers will be revisited to determine whether the Leptospirosis cases lessened while using the boots and other protective gear. Below is a summarized process flow of how the PCP Western Visayas-Panay Chapter wishes to achieve this goal.