Dengue fever cases top 9,000 in Taiwan

Taipei, Sept. 13 (CNA) The number of dengue fever cases recorded since May has increased to 9,103, with 98.41 percent occurring in Tainan and Kaohsiung, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said on Sunday. As of Saturday, 8,022 cases had been reported in Tainan, accounting for 88.12 percent of the total, an increase of 362 cases from the previous day, the CDC said. The city of Kaohsiung has had 936 cases, accounting for 10.29 percent, an increase of 51 cases from a day earlier. Other cities and counties have had far fewer cases, with Pingtung reporting 33, Taichung 22, Taoyuan 19, New Taipei 16, Taipei 10, Chiayi County nine, Hsinchu County eight, Hsinchu City six, Changhua County five, Chiayi City four. Keelung, Miaoli, Nantou and the outlying counties of Penghu and Kinmen have each reported two cases, while Yilan, Hualien and Yunlin counties have each had one case. No cases have been reported in Taitung County and outlying Lienchiang County (Matsu). About 44 people may have died of the mosquito-borne disease since the start of the summer, but only 18 have so far been confirmed, according to the CDC. In the southern municipality of Tainan, 2,813 cases were reported in North District, 1,217 cases in West Central District, 1,136 cases in South District, 859 cases in Yongkang District, 660 cases in Annan District and 612 cases in East District, according to Tainan City Government's Health Department. Almost all those areas fall within a 12km radius of Tainan Railway Station. Only two of Tainan's 37 districts have reported no cases -- Beimen and Longqi -- the Health Department said. In neighboring Kaohsiung, the local Health Department has sent personnel to spray insecticide in Cijin, Dashe and Yancheng districts and said they expected an escalation in the number of dengue fever cases, potentially lasting until November. Of Kaohsiung's 38 districts, 28 have so far reported dengue fever cases, according to local statistics. In 2014, the incidence of dengue fever cases in Kaohsiung reached nearly 15,000, with 20 fatalities as a result of the mosquito-borne disease. (By Chen Wei-ting, Chang Jung-hsiang, Wang Shwu-fen and Kuo Chung-han)