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Dengue death toll rises in Indonesia JAKARTA - Dengue fever has spread in Indonesia killing at least 229 people and infecting about 12,338 in the first two months of the year, with the capital, Jakarta, having a fifth of the deaths, a government health official said. Most cases are on the island of Java, where more than half of the country's 231 million people live, and are concentrated in Jakarta, said Thomas Suroso, director for animal-borne diseases. Jakarta has a population of about 10 million people.
``It is a big city and the population is dense,'' Suroso said of the disease's outbreak in the city. ``We are conducting mass fogging and asking communities to clean-up breeding places. It is important that communities are aware.'' Dengue is spread through mosquito bites.
At least 47 people died of the fever in Jakarta alone and another 4,184 are infected, as heavy rainfalls inundated some parts of the city in the past few weeks. Floods in Jakarta and its surrounding areas left three people dead and forced more than 13,000 to flee their homes, the Jakarta Post reported Saturday.
The number of deaths from dengue in the first two months of this year is 15 percent higher than the same period last year. The disease claimed 199 lives and infected 11,579 people across the country from January through February last year, Suroso said.
Indonesia's Health Ministry has declared the outbreak ``extraordinary,'' because of its spread and not an epidemic. The Ministry will provide 150 billion rupiah ($17.7 million) in emergency funds to combat the disease's spread, including equipment for spraying insecticides on mosquito breeding grounds. The disease also reached 20 provinces such as Bali, South and North Sulawesi, East Kalimantan, Central Java and East Java.
Indonesia's rainy season begins in December and runs through February. Dengue fever is transmitted by the aedes aegypti mosquito. Poor urban planning and soil erosion in rural areas have created stagnant pools that encourage mosquito breeding.



Posted in Dengue Fever @ 24 February 2004 00:02 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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