Search This Blog

Monday, July 11, 2011

Australia : Dengue fever on the rise

Article from The Sydney Morning Herald :

" Increasing numbers of Australians are returning home with the mosquito-borne disease.

The explosion in the number of dengue fever cases in Australia this year is a result of travellers being unaware of the dangers and becoming infected overseas, particularly in south-east Asia.

This has led to a plea by the Australian Medical Association for those returning from holiday or arriving from other countries to be vigilant about avoiding the disease.

"If you take precautions with mosquitoes, you shouldn't catch it and you can't bring it home," the association's federal vice-president, Steve Hambleton, says. "Overseas, dengue is everywhere."

In Australia, the number of people who tested positive to dengue in the three months to March more than doubled from the same period last year, figures from the World Health Organisation show.

There have been 354 cases of dengue fever so far this year, compared with 156 last year. Almost half of them were reported in Western Australia, where the numbers jumped from 85 in the first quarter of last year to 166 this year.

A spokeswoman for the WA Department of Health says none of the most recent infections were contracted in the state. "Nearly all cases were acquired in south-east Asian countries, predominantly in Bali," she says.

This was similar to last year, when travellers returning from Bali accounted for more than 80 per cent of cases of dengue fever in the state."

No comments:

Post a Comment