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Donate, don’t use firecrackers, DoH appeals

The Department of Health (DoH) has urged the public to donate their resources reserved for purchasing fireworks and firecrackers to survivors of typhoon “Yolanda” to avoid related injuries this holiday season.

“We cannot stop people from celebrating and it all depends on them but it would be better if they would rather give to Samar and Leyte and not use their money for firecrackers or fireworks,” DoH Secretary Enrique T. Ona said.

The Health chief also urged local governments to mount community fireworks displays for the enjoyment of residents and avoid individual use of fireworks or firecrackers.

According to Ona, the government spends at least P3,000 per person for the treatment of wounds and infection from the use of fireworks and firecrackers.

In 2012, the government registered 904 injuries compared to the 987 injuries it recorded in the New Year’s Eve revelry in 2011. Stray bullet injuries went down from 29 in 2011 to 25 in 2012.

Infections because of wounds caused by fireworks and firecrackers explosion also went down from five in 2011 to two in 2012.

A seven-year-old girl died during the New Year’s Eve revelry this year from a stray bullet. Stephanie Nicole Ella was one of the 20 persons who sustained injuries due to stray bullets this year as the nation welcomed the New Year. (Jenny F. Manongdo)