Dengue cases drop 25% compared to 2015

The number of dengue cases fell by a quarter for the week of 3-9 July, 2016 compared with the week before.

A total of 1,512 dengue cases were reported, 505 cases or 25% cases fewer than the 2,017 cases the week before, said a statement posted on Health Director-General Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah’s website.

From January until July 9, there were 59,294 cases reported compared with 62,648 for the same period last year, a decrease of 5.4% (3,354 cases).

There were 134 deaths compared with 173 deaths for the same period last year (39 cases or 22.5% lower).

“The decreasing trend is closely linked to the festive season. The trend was also similar in 2014 and last year,” he said.

Dr Hisham added that during the Raya festive season, the use and disposal of food containers would increase and add to domestic trash. This would pose a concern over Aedes breeding and the increase in dengue cases. He urged local authorities to collect garbage regularly to prevent mosquito breeding.

In pointing out the La Nina phenomenon, which would bring about high rainfall in the next few months and could contribute to increasing dengue cases, Dr Hisham urged the public to cooperate by not throwing rubbish indiscriminately and to destroy all mosquito breeding sites.

Meanwhile, the Health Minister, Dr Subrama­niam said the ministry was still waiting for a complete report from the World Health Organisation on a dengue vaccine before it could be implemented in Malaysia.

“While we recognised that the vaccine does some good, we are also concerned about some potential problems and unanswered questions on the vaccine. Until we are clear on these areas, it will be difficult for us to make a decision on whether to use it nationwide."

“WHO has come up with an initial statement recommending the usage of the vaccine but with plenty of caution, so we will wait for the complete report which is expected next month,” he said.

/theSTAR 14-07-2016

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