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Dengue fever kills 307, sickens over 20,000 in Indonesia JAKARTA - A seasonal dengue fever outbreak in Indonesia has killed at least 307 people and sickened more than 20,000 others this year, health officials and local media reports said Wednesday. Health Minister Siti Fadilah Supari warned of a possible major spike in mosquito-borne dengue fever cases during the next two weeks because of torrential rains last week that flooded the capital Jakarta and two neighbouring provinces.

"Due to changeable climate conditions after recent flooding, we are assuming that dengue fever cases will sharply increase," Supari was quoted as saying by the Indonesian daily Koran Tempo newspaper. She said the floods had created more small pools of fresh water, which are excellent breeding ground for the Aedes aegypti mosquito. It can transmit the dengue virus to humans through a single bite.

The Indonesian Health Ministry had declared eight of the country's 33 provinces, including all provinces on densely populated Java Island, as high-risk for dengue fever because of the skyrocketing number of cases. Rita Kustriastuti of the health ministry's dengue team told Elshinta private radio that a total of 20,416 dengue fever cases were recorded in the country since January 1, with 307 people dead.

She said additional dengue fever cases were reported from, among others, Central and West Java provinces, as well as in the capital Jakarta. Kustriastuti said health authorities would conduct a mass eradication against nets of mosquitoes that transmit the disease in the capital Jakarta on Friday, including a mass fogging through residential areas that considered as the high-risk.

She said unless step up vigilance and continue with ridding our environment of the mosquitoes that transmit the disease and their larvae, we may still see more casualties falling in the coming weeks. West Java was the worst-hit province with 86 deaths and more than 4,958 people infected. West Java and neighbouring Banten province's infection rates have been declared an "extraordinary occurrence" after the number of infected people there rose sharply.

In Jakarta, nine people have died from dengue fever and more than 2,970 others have been infected. Fatalities were also reported in Central and East Java provinces, and the provinces of West and South Kalimantan, North Sulawesi and Papua. Aedes aegypti mosquitoes lay their eggs in fresh, still water. The mosquitoes can breed in discarded tires, flower pots, oil drums and water storage containers nearby human dwellings.

Other health officials likened dengue fever in Indonesia to an "iceberg," saying that with the rainy season underway, the disease will continue spreading. They have urged residents to be vigilant about keeping their surroundings clear as infection rates were on the rise.

Dengue infects up to 50 million people worldwide each year, and South-east Asia and the Western Pacific are the worst-hit regions. Dengue hemorrhagic fever is a lethal complication of the disease, and is a leading cause of hospitalization and death among children in several Asian countries, according to the World Health Organization.


Link to related event Related event:
Dengue fever in Indonesia

Related blog entries (category 'Dengue Fever') Related blog entries (category 'Dengue Fever'):
10 February 2007 · Dengue fever kills 252 in Indonesia
05 February 2007 · Dengue kills 75 in Indonesia in January
18 January 2006 · Over 1,000 people die of dengue fever in 2005
16 November 2005 · Dengue fever claims 80 lives in Semarang
20 October 2005 · Bogor prepares for more dengue patients


Posted in Dengue Fever @ 14 February 2007 12:53 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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