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Fiji: Dengue fever cases double in past week

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The number of dengue fever cases on the Pacific island of Fiji have skyrocketed recently, more than doubling during the past week, prompting the beginning of a dengue clean up campaign, according to a Fiji Broadcasting Corporation (FBC) report Jan. 16.

About one week ago, the health ministry reported 406 cases since the start of November last year; however, according to the latest numbers released today, that total has blossomed to over 900 cases. Fortunately, there has been no reported fatalities to date.

“To date there are 904 confirmed positive cases of dengue fever reported. Of these 766 cases from the central division. There are 101 from the western and 37 from the northern division", Deputy Health Secretary, Dr Metuisela Tuicakau noted.

This has prompted health authorities to start a dengue clean up campaign in the central division today where 80 percent of all the country's cases have occurred to date.

Residents of central division are being asked to clean up their property and remove any sources of standing water.

According to the Fiji Ministry of Health, dengue Fever is primarily an urban disease in tropical regions of the world. There are three areas world-wide that are currently at increased risk for travelers getting the disease: Western Pacific, South East Asia, Eastern Seaboard of Central and South America.

Dengue Fever is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito. The survival and replication of the dengue virus is maintained in a relational cycle between the human host and its parasitic counterpart, the day-biting Aedes mosquito species. The Aedes mosquito, once infected by the dengue virus, remains infective to humans throughout its lifespan.

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