Dengue fever cases in the first 19 weeks of 2013 dropped 31 per cent from the same period last year, the Ministry of Health said Friday.
Through the first full week of May, Cambodian public health centres saw 2,541 cases of the mosquito-borne disease, compared with 3,668 cases in 2012, said Dr Ngan Chantha, director of the National Dengue Control Program.
Deaths dropped less, with 15 children dead from the disease so far this year, compared with 17 last year. Nevertheless, these numbers represent a significant improvement from the dengue epidemic year of 2007, when the disease had killed 57 people by this point in the year and infected more than 4,000 others, Chantha said.
“We’re still on alert,” he said, warning that dengue cases tend to increase each year with the coming of the rainy season, because dengue-transmitting Aedes mosquitos need water to reproduce.
Families can reduce rainy season dengue risks by eliminating areas where standing water could collect around their homes, installing bed nets and using the mosquito larvicide Abate to reduce contact with mosquitos, he said.