Press Release | 2 April 2024

The Department of Health (DOH) warns against heat-related illnesses that become more prevalent with extreme temperatures. The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) noted temperatures as high as 45 degrees Celsius in multiple locations from March 28 to April 1, 2024. The same trend is forecasted until tomorrow, April 3, 2024. Temperatures ranging from 33-41 degrees Celsius are classified by PAGASA as “extreme caution” while 42-51 degrees Celsius as “danger.”

Such temperatures can lead to heat cramps and heat exhaustion, characterized by symptoms such as fatigue, dizziness, headache, vomiting, and light-headedness. Prolonged heat exposure increases the probability of heat stroke, a serious condition characterized by loss of consciousness, confusion, or seizures, which can be deadly if left untreated.

If any of these symptoms is observed, the public is advised to use the following first aid measures: Move the person to a shaded, cool area, and provide ventilation. Remove the person’s outer clothing. Apply cold compresses, ice packs, cold water, or cold wet cloth against the skin, especially the head, face, neck, armpits, wrists, ankles, and groin. If the patient is conscious, encourage frequent slow sips of cool water. Contact emergency services or bring the person to the hospital immediately.

The public is advised to regularly monitor reports from PAGASA and take preventive measures against these illnesses, including drinking plenty of water; avoidance of iced tea, soda, coffee, or alcoholic drinks; limiting time spent outdoors between 10 am to 4 pm; and usage of protection against sunburn such as hats, umbrellas, and sunblock; and wearing of loose fitting, lightweight clothing.

“Heat-related illnesses are preventable. Sa masugid na pagsubaybay sa heat index, maaagapan natin ang heat-related illness. The DOH is actively monitoring cases of heat related illnesses, dahil sa Bagong Pilipinas, Bawat Buhay ay Mahalaga,” said Secretary of Health Teodoro J. Herbosa.