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SASTM Newsflash - Dengue / DHF Update: Thailand & Kenya


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SASTM Newsflash



DENGUE/DHF UPDATE: Thailand & Kenya




Public Health Ministry permanent secretary Dr Narong Sahamethapat revealed that the number of people with dengue fever exceeded 5700 people during [1 Jan-5 Feb 2013].


According to Dr Narong, the number of patients with dengue fever has increased 5 times compared to that reported during the same period last year [2012]. He said the number could rise to around 100 000 - 120 000 people.


According to the Permanent Secretary, people who are at risk of contracting the fever include adults, overweight people, and teens. He cautioned that 90 percent of the patients have mild fever while red rashes on their bodies are not visible which, to the doctor's 1st diagnosis, might not appear to be the symptoms of dengue fever.


However, if the symptoms have gone undetected, the lives of those who have it could be at great risk. 4 patients have reportedly succumbed to the disease so far this year [2013]. To prevent more deaths, public health provincial offices have been instructed to kill mosquito larvae before the rainy season arrives.


Thai people are also encouraged to keep all containers closed to prevent mosquitoes from using them as their breeding ground. A war room has been set up to devise a strategy to reduce the number of deaths and contain the outbreak.



According to the Thai Ministry of Public Health, Bureau of Vector-borne Disease report on the situation of dengue infection in Thailand, on week 5 [ending 5 Feb 2013], a total of 5739 cases and 4 deaths were reported. The attack rate was 8.96 per 100 000 population. The case fatality rate (CFR) was 0.07 percent. The numbers of dengue cases have increased by a factor of 5.4, compared with the same period in 2012 -- 1056 cases and one death. The attack rate was 1.65 per 100 000 population, with a CFR 0.09 percent.


According to the Thai Ministry of Public Health, Bureau of Epidemiology's (BOE) report of dengue infection in Thailand between 1 Jan 2013 and 10 Feb 2013, a total of 7033 cases and 5 deaths due to dengue infection were reported nationwide. The attack rate was 11.07 per 100 000 population, with a CFR 0.01 percent. The highest attack rate (per 100 000 population) was reported in the south region (27.25), followed by the central region (11.62), the north region (7.61), and the northeastern region (5.78).


The 5 provinces with the highest attack rates of dengue infection (per 100 000 population) were Songkhla (58.19), Krabi (56.03), Phatthalung (35.45), Surat Thani (34.20), and Rayong (34.15). The highest percentage of cases was reported in the 15-24 year old age group (27.14 percent), followed by the 10-14 year old age group (20.33 percent) and the 7-9 year old age group (11.55 percent).


Africa Kenya (North Eastern province)


An outbreak of dengue fever in northern Kenya is drawing attention to the need for improved health services in some of the country's most remote communities.


Health officials report the dengue fever outbreak is taking place in Mandera District [North Eastern province], along the Ethiopian and Somali borders. Local health workers say there have been some 300 cases since the outbreak began in January [2013]. 3 suspected dengue deaths have been recorded, and there are fears that more cases have gone unreported.


"We can't term it as a big outbreak now, but we have sent a disease surveillance and response team there to help the facilities there and to also take specimen for further tests," said Ian Njeru, director of disease surveillance and response at the Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation. "Some 100 specimens we collected tested negative for malaria, and we have started to diagnose to see if they can be dengue fever infections."


"Most of the patients are seeking treatment in private clinics," said one official. "The district hospital is not treating the matter seriously. The poor are suffering, and they are the most affected." A nurse at a government hospital told IRIN that they lacked the antibiotics and fluids needed to help manage the dengue outbreak. "No intervention measures are in place now. No special team has been formed to deal with the dengue cases since an outbreak was reported mid-last month [January 2013]," she said. "An anaemic and expectant [mother] died at a clinic in town; she had both malaria and dengue. A police sergeant based in Elwak [a town in Mandera] died on 29 Jan 2013, while another man who contracted the disease died in Mandera last week [week of 11 Feb 2013]."


In 2011, an outbreak of dengue fever infected up to 5000 people.


Communicated by: ProMED-mail




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The information provided in SASTM Newsflashes is collected from various news sources, health agencies and government agencies. Although the information is believed to be accurate, any express or implied warranty as to its suitability for any purpose is categorically disclaimed. In particular, this information should not be construed to serve as medical advice for any individual. The health information provided is general in nature, and may not be appropriate for all persons. Medical advice may vary because of individual differences in such factors as health risks, current medical conditions and treatment, allergies, pregnancy and breast feeding, etc. In addition, global health risks are constantly evolving and changing. International travelers should consult a qualified physician for medical advice prior to departure.

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