Taiwan CDC expects dengue outbreak to subside in late September

By Ko Lin

Taiwan’s Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director-General Steve Kuo said he expects the dengue fever epidemic in Tainan to subside in late September after having reached its peak season last month, reports said Sunday.

“Similar to a forest wildfire, the scale of impact will eventually come to an end,” he said during a press conference regarding the dengue outbreak in southern Taiwan.

Kuo denied allegations that the agency failed to put a cap on the mosquito-borne disease, saying the disease could have happened to any nation, including Japan, who suffered a minor dengue fever outbreak last year.

Meanwhile, the CDC head said the only method to eradicate the epidemic would be for the nation’s public to keep their surrounding quarters clean and hygienic.

“A disease cannot become endemic as long as everyone takes care of their environment, especially in places where mosquitoes tend to breed,” he said.

So far the number of dengue fever cases recorded since May has increased to 5,542, with more than 98 percent in Tainan and Kaohsiung, according to the CDC

As of Saturday, 4,884 cases had been reported in Tainan, accounting for 88.13 percent of the total, an increase of 299 cases from the previous day.

If the outbreak turns for the worse after September, the agency would have to take another drastic measure to combat the mosquito-borne disease, Kuo explained.

In the latest statistics provided by health authorities, Pingtung County already witnessed 20 patients suffering from the disease since May, followed by 15 in New Taipei, 12 in Taichung, nine in Taoyuan, seven in Hsinchu County, and six in Chiayi County.

Photo Courtesy of CNA
     Photo Courtesy of CNA
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