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Opinion, Opinion

Fight The Bite On Dengue

Fight The Bite On Dengue
February 28
11:00 2017

There is another outbreak of dengue fever.

And, instead of sitting around waiting for the local government to start a clean-up, people need to take ownership.

Let’s not forget somebody has already been charged with breeding mosquitos. We need to be proactive in keeping our compounds clean.

It is unfair to sit around waiting for towns and city council workers to clean up drains and stop mosquitoes from breeding.

It is unfair to blame doctors and the health system when the spread of dengue can easily be stopped.

Everyone knows about cleanliness, yet people become complacent. One should not and cannot complain if the very basic is not done by us.

Dengue fever is not new to Fiji. Yet, people take it very lightly. It becomes another reason to play the blame game.

Let’s start setting good examples for the future generation by taking ownership of our surrounding.

Another breeding ground for mosquitos are the countless rubbish people continue to throw. Not only do these people not have any pride in their country, they are contributing towards making others very, very ill.

In the first six weeks of this year a total of 143 dengue positive cases were recorded. The central/eastern division has recorded 25 dengue positive cases, with the western recording 88 and the northern recording 30 dengue positive cases.

The numbers may continue to increase if prevention and control measures are not intensified.

The Health Ministry strongly urges the public to act immediately to destroy dengue mosquito breeding places. Removing dengue mosquito breeding places will ultimately lead to a decrease in the number of dengue positive cases.

Health officials in dengue high risk areas have already been mobilised following the co-ordination of the ‘Fight the Bite’ campaign to reduce mosquito breeding sites.

Spraying of mosquito breeding grounds in communities has commenced and a cleanup campaign against dengue fever and other arboviral diseases (Zika and Chikungunya) will be launched.

Symptoms, which usually begin four to six days after infection and last for up to 10 days, may include:

  • Sudden, high fever
  • Severe headaches
  • Pain behind the eyes
  • Severe joint and muscle pain
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Skin rash, which appears two to five days after the onset of fever
  • Mild bleeding (such a nose bleed, bleeding gums, or easy bruising)
  • Sometimes, symptoms are mild and can be mistaken for those of the flu or another viral infection. Younger children and people who have never had the infection before tend to have milder cases than older children and adults.

However, serious problems can develop. These include dengue hemorrhagic fever, a rare complication characterised by high fever, damage to lymph and blood vessels, bleeding from the nose and gums, enlargement of the liver, and failure of the circulatory system.

The symptoms may progress to massive bleeding, shock, and death. This is called dengue shock syndrome (DSS).

People with weakened immune systems as well as those with a second or subsequent dengue infection are believed to be at greater risk for developing dengue hemorrhagic fever.

 

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

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