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Indonesia's health agencies record increase in dengue cases

Jakarta Post - March 5, 2024

Radhiyya Indra, Jakarta – Health agencies in some regions have been recording an increase in cases of dengue fever and deaths caused by it in the past month, and are warning residents to be alert regarding the mosquito-borne disease.

Tangerang regency's health agency reported that 600 people caught dengue fever and four of them died in February alone, the agency said on Monday.

The number of dengue cases in Tangerang last month matched the January figure and brought the regency's dengue fever tally to 1,200 cases this year.

Tangerang regency health agency head Achmad Muchlis said that there had been more cases this year compared to the same period in previous years, Antara reported.

In West Java, authorities recorded over 1,000 cases and five deaths last week. The province reported 4,600 cases and 36 deaths in January and February.

The province's health agency is increasing its public campaign to encourage people to keep their environment clean and prevent water stagnation.

"We are also asking all hospitals here to standby and anticipate [a jump in cases]," West Java's acting governor Bey Machmudin said on Monday in a statement.

West Java health authorities previously said that the dengue cases were spread across large cities like Bandung and Bogor.

In Indonesia's capital, the South Jakarta health agency also recorded a rise in dengue fever cases, from 75 cases in early February to 149 cases this month as of Saturday.

Jakarta has seen many dengue fever cases. The capital's health agency said that 627 people have caught the disease from January to late February. The patients range from 5-year-olds to the elderly.

Dengue fever is a viral disease transmitted through the bite of infected Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes.

Commonly found in tropical climates like Indonesia, dengue is common during the rainy season, when the mosquito population thrives in stagnant water.

Dengue cases have been rising since early this year as Indonesia entered the peak of the rainy season.

The weather agency recently predicted that there was potential for heavy rain in Java and some other regions.

Health agencies and doctors' associations have blamed the rainy season for the outpouring of dengue fever cases in recent weeks.

When Indonesia saw the number of dengue fever cases spike in mid-February, Health Ministry spokeswoman Siti Nadia Tarmizi warned that cases could still rise throughout the year. She reminded people to remain vigilant.

In line with the Health Ministry's direction, health agencies are intensifying their efforts to curb the spread of dengue.

Several regions, such as North Samarinda in East Kalimantan, have conducted fogging, or spraying aerosol insecticides, in areas most affected by the disease.

In late 2023, the Health Ministry recorded nearly 70,000 cases of dengue hemorrhagic fever, a severe form of dengue fever that reportedly caused around 500 deaths last year.

Source: https://asianews.network/indonesias-health-agencies-record-increase-in-dengue-cases