News: Increase in dengue cases during monsoon season

The Star, 25 Dec 2012

PETALING JAYA: Dengue cases may have gone down in recent years but the Aedes mosquito is still a cause for concern.

Health Ministry statistics have recorded 467 cases nationwide from Dec 2 to 8, an increase of 56 cases from about a month before.

Deputy director-general (Public Health) Datuk Dr Lokman Hakim Sulaiman attributed this slight rise to the monsoon season.

“With more rain, there are more breeding places for Aedes mosquitoes. This increases the adult Aedes density and the risk of dengue.”

He said that flooding caused by heavy rain could heighten the risk of food and water-borne diseases such as diarrhoea, typhoid, Hepatitis A and even leptospirosis.

The Malaysian Meteorological Department previously said many parts of the country were in for a spell of wet weather.

As such, Dr Lokman advised the public to stem the spread of dengue in their surroundings, adding that fogging measures were not enough.

He said Malaysians should avoid flood waters whenever possible especially if they suffered cuts or lesions.

From January until Dec 8, there were 20,837 dengue cases and 34 deaths. Last year for the same period, there were 18,583 cases and 34 deaths.

In comparison, the same period during 2010 recorded 44,641 cases and 132 deaths.

Government officials previously attributed this decline to Communication Behavioural Impact (Combi) campaigns aimed at checking the disease.

Source:  http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/12/25/nation/12500086&sec=nation