Health Ministry pushes for frequent use of mosquito spray as dengue death toll rises

SUNDAY, MARCH 10, 2024

In a warning against the spread of dengue fever, the Public Health Ministry has urged people to protect themselves by using anti-mosquito sprays and lotions.

Public Health Minister Cholnan Srikaew said on Sunday that at the latest meeting of the National Communicable Disease Control committee, he learned that the number of dengue patients this year has risen to 17,783 cases, more than double the number compared to the same period last year. The disease has claimed 25 lives in 16 provinces this year alone, he said.

Cholnan added that he has instructed provincial disease control committees to coordinate with health volunteers to look for possible mosquito nursing grounds and spray them with chemicals. He also ordered community areas to be sprayed with mosquito-killing chemicals frequently.

Thongchai Keeratihuttayakorn, director-general of the Disease Control Department, said the ratio of dengue deaths was far higher than those from influenza and Covid-19. The ratio of people killed by dengue, so far, was 0.14 per 100 cases, compared to 0.01-0.02 deaths for every 100 influenza patients.

He added that the Public Health Ministry has allocated 74.8 million baht for distributing anti-mosquito sprays or lotions to dengue patients. He said if people protect themselves from mosquito bites even for five days, they can save the ministry about 219 million baht in treatment costs.