Taiwan CDC once again urges public to stay vigilant against dengue fever and clean up vector-breeding sites to prevent transmiss

During October 8 and 14, 2013, 13 new indigenous cases of dengue fever, including 1 death, and 5 new imported cases of dengue fever were confirmed. According to the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC), the number of indigenous dengue cases in Pingtung County continued to increase and the distribution of cases has spread to 18 villages. Taiwan CDC urges the public to take precautions against mosquitoes and periodically empty water-filled containers and clean up vector-breeding sites. Public is also urged to seek immediate medical attention when suspected symptoms develop. On the other hand, the physicians are advised to be vigilant for and notify any suspected cases to the health authority immediately to prevent further spread of the disease.

All new 13 indigenous cases confirmed last week reside in Pingtung County. As of October 14, 2013, a cumulative total of 164 indigenous dengue cases have been confirmed this dengue season. Among the indigenous dengue cases, 152 cases have been confirmed in Pingtung County (69 cases in Pingtung City, 36 cases in Chunri Township, 28 cases in Chaozhou Township, 11 cases in Xinyuan Township, 4 cases in Xinpi Township, 1 case in Neipu Township, 1 case in Zhutian Township, 1 case in Wanluan Township, and 1 case in Linluo Township), 7 cases have been confirmed in Taipei City, 4 cases have been confirmed in Kaohsiung City, and 1 case has been confirmed in New Taipei City.

The death case confirmed last week was a 76-year-old female who resided in Changchun Village, Pingtung City and had a history of high blood pressure. On October 6, she sought medical attention after she developed symptoms, including loss of appetite, dry mouth and tongue, headache, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, muscle ache and joint pain and was diagnosed with dengue fever. On October 10, she fell several times and became unconscious. On October 11, after she was rushed to the emergency department for medical attention, she still passed away. As of now, three of the four people residing in the same household with the case have been diagnosed with dengue fever.

Taiwan CDC states that the ongoing outbreak in Pingtung City has gradually spread to other villages. Although the mosquito densities in the primary areas affected by dengue fever have lowered, the mosquito densities in other areas have remained high. Taiwan CDC stresses that everyone needs to participate in dengue control efforts in order to successfully contain the epidemic and urges the public to stay vigilant against dengue fever and take necessary measures such as draining water containers and cleaning up vector breeding sites around their residences as well as preventing mosquito bites to effectively prevent the spread of dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever and protect their health and the health of their family.According to Article 70 of the Communicable Disease Control Act, anyone who refuses, evades or obstructs disease control measures such as inspection decided by competent authorities or fails to notify the competent authorities of the presence of vector breeding sites that is later identified by competent authorities or clean up vector breeding sites as requested by competent authorities may be fined NT$ 3,000 up to NT$ 15,000. For more information on dengue fever, please call the toll-free Communicable Disease Reporting and Care Hotline, 1922, or 0800-001922 if calling from a cell phone, or visit the Taiwan CDC’s website at http://www.cdc.gov.tw.