News / Asia

Dengue Cases Rise Sharply in Southeast Asia

Simone Orendain

Southeast Asia is experiencing an increase in dengue fever cases.  In some countries the number of victims has nearly doubled, including the Philippines, where health officials say the number of dengue cases reported this year is up nearly 90 percent from last year.  

From January through mid-August about 63,000 cases were reported throughout the country.  At least 465 patients died from the disease.

The rise is the result of several factors, including better reporting of cases and faster detection said Eric Tayag, the head of epidemiology at the health department. Tayag said the current drought in the Phillipines is exacerbating the problem.

"We had problems of water supply in wider areas in the country.  So many [people] began to store water and these were not covered.  So this caused the multiplication of mosquitoes," said Tayag. Standing water is an ideal mosquito breeding ground.  

Dengue is endemic in Southeast Asia, and many other tropical countries in South Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Sometimes called breakbone disease, dengue can cause fever, severe headaches and joint pain, and internal bleeding. 

It can lead to a potentially deadly hemorrhagic fever, which brings on extensive bleeding from the nose and gums, and internally. Children are especially vulnerable to hemorrhagic fever.

This year the mosquitoes in the Philippines are carrying multiple strains of dengue, said the health department's Tayag, not just the one that typically surfaces.  Still, he said the number of cases is not at epidemic levels.

Officials in the Philippines expect a total of 80,000 dengue cases by year's end.  But relief is in sight, said Tayag.

"On the country level, most cases will occur during the rainy months, peak in August and then begin to decrease after that."

For much of Southeast Asia, the rainy season starts in June or July and continues through September.

For the same January through August period, Thailand saw dengue cases rise more than 90 percent.  Vietnam also has reported increased cases. Governments are urging citizens to clear standing water around homes to reduce mosquito breeding grounds and to take other measures to avoid being bitten.

You May Like

Ukraine Purges Interior Ministry Leadership With Pro-Russian Ties

Interior Minister Avakov says 91 people 'in positions of leadership' have been fired, including 8 generals found to have links to past pro-Moscow governments More

US Airlines Point to Additional Problems of any Ebola Travel Ban

Airline officials note that even under travel ban, they may not be able to determine where passenger set out from, as there are no direct flights from Liberia, Guinea or Sierra Leone More

Nigerian President to Seek Another Term

Goodluck Jonathan has faced intense criticism for failing to stop Boko Haram militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid