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Another Filipina’s death linked to heat wave

07 August 2018

By Daisy CL Mandap

A female Hong Kong resident has died amid the heat wave affecting the city.

Marissa Danao, 60 years old, from Pasig City, died on Jul 28, a Sunday, after reportedly coming home from work and complaining of the heat. She immediately went to bed and was found dead the next day.
Danao had complained of the heat
the day before she was found dead in be
Officials at the Consulate say Danao, who was divorced with one child, had a thyroid problem which could have triggered her death. But the exact cause will not be known until the autopsy report is released within the next few months.

A funeral service for Danao was held on Sunday, Aug. 5, attended by about 80 of her friends and relatives. Her remains are scheduled to be repatriated to the Philippines on the evening of Thursday, Aug. 9.

Danao was the third Filipina whose death within a week of each other was linked to heat-related causes. The two other victims were both domestic helpers who were found lifeless in the toilets of their respective employers’ flats.

The first victim was a 62-year-old native of La Union who was found dead on Jul 28. The second was 54 years old and hailed from Ilocos, who was found dead in the morning of Aug 2.

Also the previous week, two Filipina domestic workers were rushed to hospital in an ambulance after feeling unwell while on the 18th floor offices of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office at Mass Mutual Tower in Wanchai.  

Romulo has expressed alarm at the rising number of health-related deaths among overseas Filipino workers that she is planning to hold quarterly wellness seminars at POLO. Tapped to conduct them is Assistant Labor Attache Angelica Sunga, who is a registered nurse in the Philippines.

Over the past weeks, Hong Kong’s Centre for Health Protection has been posting daily advisories on preventing heat stroke and sunburn “in very hot weather”.

Part of the advisory states:

"The public should carry and drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration while engaging in outdoor activities," a spokesman for the CHP said.

             "Those engaged in strenuous outdoor activities should avoid beverages containing caffeine, such as coffee and tea, as well as alcohol, as they speed up water loss through the urinary system," the spokesman explained.

            "The obese, the sick, including those with heart disease or high blood pressure, the old and the young are more vulnerable to heat-related illnesses. They should pay special attention," the spokesman added.

            The public should adopt the following precautions:
1) Wear loose and light-coloured clothing to reduce heat absorption and facilitate sweat evaporation and heat dissipation;
2) Avoid vigorous exercise and prolonged activities like hiking or trekking as heat, sweating and exhaustion place additional demands on the physique;
3) Perform outdoor activities in the morning or late afternoon;
4) For indoor activities, open all windows, use a fan or use air-conditioning to maintain good ventilation; and
5)  Reschedule work to cooler times of the day.

If working in a hot environment is inevitable, introduce shade in the workplace where practicable, and start work slowly and pick up the pace gradually. Get into a cool area for rest at regular intervals to allow the body to recuperate.”

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