Dengue cases surge threefold, with 33 fatalities already this year
Over 27,000 people fell ill with dengue fever during the first half of this year and 33 of them died, the chief of the Disease Control Department said on Thursday.
Hospital records show that from January 1 to June 28, 27,377 people were treated for dengue, three times higher than the same period of last year.
The DCD chief said 33 people succumbed to the mosquito-borne virus during the period.
Since the start of June, between 1,500 and 2,400 have been sickened by dengue, causing up to three fatalities, Tharet said.
The age group with the most cases was children aged 5-14, followed by the 15-to-24 age group.
The highest number of cases were seen in the South, followed by Bangkok and Central Region.
Dengue fever is caused by any one of four virus strains transmitted through the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito. These mosquitoes are common both in and around human lodgings.
The most common symptoms of dengue fever are:
- High fever (40°C/104°F)
- Severe headache
- Pain behind the eyes
- Muscle and joint pains
Tharet said the DCD is combating the spread of Dengue by launching awareness campaigns staffed by village volunteers and local administrations and the private sector. The campaigns are aimed especially at educating schoolchildren to protect themselves from mosquito bites.
He also encouraged people suffering from high fever for more than two days to visit a hospital immediately to check whether they had dengue and avoid the chance of dying from the virus.