Health Buzz

Watsons Slay the Swarm: The Anti-Dengue Fashion Phenomenon


Dengue community awareness with a unique art and fashion performance, educational and fun booth activities for the public, and creative promotion of healthcare highlight the recent Slay the Swarm: The Anti-Dengue Fashion Phenomenon presented by Watsons Philippines at Liwasang Aurora Amphitheater in Quezon Memorial Circle. 

The Watsons health advocacy campaign with the support of Quezon City Local government brings awareness to the alarming growth of dengue cases this year. “This pioneering health education effort combines art and performance to raise awareness on an often overlooked health concern.

We see the importance for us to tackle the seriousness of dengue – why this viral infection shouldn’t be taken lightly, but at the same time, we don’t need to be afraid of it,”  shares Watsons Customer Director Jared de Guzman. 

The Swarm’s costumes represent common symptoms of dengue: rashes with lumps and bumps accents, fever with illuminating flames, nausea with stimulating and dizzying patterns, and body pain with spikes and sharp silhouettes. The costumes are designed by Oz Go of House of Mizrahi.

Slay the Swarm was staged in the city with one of the highest cases of dengue in Metro Manila. In fact, Dr. Marlon Molano, Medical Officer III of the Quezon City Health Department shared that from January 1 to August 24, 2023, the Quezon City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (QCESU) logged 2,156 dengue cases. In contrast, the total number of cases for 2022 was 2,558. “This campaign allows our youth to be well-informed, to be proactive in the fight against dengue, and to propagate the series of awareness through the current information path of this generation – which is social media,” he said. 

Dr. Molano commended Watsons, a private partner, for supporting a public health endeavor. “Watsons, I cannot stress how valuable this activity is, to our city and our community,” he said as he reiterated that it is only August, and yet Quezon City is already nearing the total cases last year.

Partners in health advocacy. The recent Watsons Slay the Swarm event at Quezon Memorial Circle highlighted the continued need for dengue awareness and education. The event was created by Watsons with support from the Quezon City Health Department through the Office of the City Mayor. In the photo, from left: Patrick Yu, Watsons Marketing Manager; Jared de Guzman, Watsons Customer Director; Dr. Marlon Molano, Medical Officer III, Quezon City Health Department; and Sharon Decapia, Watsons SAVP-Marketing, PR & Sustainability. 

Dengue Essentials

Families also enjoyed a whole day of surprises from Watsons with engaging booth activities from event partners: DirtBugSun, Tiger Balm, OFF!, Bite Block, Soffell, Bye Bye Fever, and Salonpas.  “As your health partner, Watsons is determined to expand their already wide-range products so the people are protected and healthy all year round – rain or shine,” Watsons Customer Director Jared de Guzman said. 

A fearless toddler came face-to-face with the fever mosquito. The most common symptoms of Dengue are high fever, headache, body aches, nausea, and rashes. Teaching the youth about the symptoms and preventive measures against dengue is the highlight of this campaign. As Dr. Molano said, “Nag-start na yung advocacy natin towards dengue ever since, pero the continuity rests within our youth.”

Slay the Swarm: The Anti-Dengue Fashion Phenomenon

Visitors of Quezon Memorial Circle also had the rare chance to witness the special performances during the main event. Four mosquitoes, in high fashion mosquito costumes, emerged from the trash-adorned Hotspot art installation and strutted across the area, with arms flailing about in a vogue-ing dance manner. They scattered throughout the place and interacted with the public as if they were spreading the dengue virus. However, they were no match against the glamorous Watsons Kontra-Dengue Duo, for the strength of Watsons insect-repellent and immunity-boosting products proved more powerful. The mosquitoes slowly backed away until they were no longer in the picture accepting their defeat, and the Watsons Kontra-Dengue Duo finished with a strong and synergistic performance.

Left: Slay the Swarm performers pose at The Hotspot installation decorated with found objects and upcycled materials; Right: Parkgoers interact with Watsons HQ installation and larger-than-life bottles reminiscent of mosquito repellent products. Both installations were created by Visual Artist Richard Aguillon and his team.

Both adults and children enjoyed the fashion phenomenon and took their time to take photos with the performers and the art installations. Watsons took dengue awareness to a whole new level with this informative and entertaining event. Just as Jared said, “Watsons has always advocated for health literacy and accessible health solutions for every Filipino. [Watsons is] grateful to have been given the opportunity to educate its citizens with preventive measures to combat Dengue at Quezon Memorial Circle.”
Slay the Swarm: The Anti-Dengue Fashion Phenomenon is one of the many exciting events from Watsons. If you missed the event, you can still buy your kontra-dengue essentials, including the MD Dengue NS1 Antigen Home Test Kit, from the 1,000+ Watsons nationwide. You can also download the app on iOS and Android and use the code “OTC100” upon checkout to get P100 off of your anti-dengue products until September 10, 2023. For more information on upcoming events, promos, discounts, and exclusive offers, follow @watsonsph on Instagram, like @WatsonsPH on Facebook, and follow @watsonsphilippines on TikTok.


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