As the monsoon season descends upon Cambodia, the Kantha Bopha Foundation urges the public to remain vigilant against the spread of dengue fever.
The alarm bell was rung after a nine-year-old girl, who was critically ill with a complicated form of the disease, required an intense 48-hour treatment including 16 blood-plasma transfusions in the Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospital.
Over the past six months alone, Cambodia has recorded a staggering 4,668 cases of dengue fever.
The girl’s rescue served as a reminder of the serious threat posed by the disease. In her critical state, she suffered from severe dengue shock syndrome before her admission to the hospital.
The foundation affirmed: “The rescue of this nine-year-old girl, as well as thousands of other children who are being treated at Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospital, are free for all without discrimination”.
With the onset of the rainy season, the threat from dengue fever becomes more potent.
The Mondulkiri provincial health department has issued a warning about the increase in female mosquitoes, the primary carriers of the dengue virus, which is transmitted to humans through their bites.
The health department is taking preventive measures against the spread of dengue fever across villages, communes, districts, and towns in the province. These steps include insecticide spraying operations in Sen Monorom town and Keo Seima district from August 1 - 9, the department announced.
Meanwhile, Kuong Lo, the director of the Preah Vihear provincial health department, has confirmed that dengue fever outbreaks are occurring in four of the towns and seven districts in the province.
The department has undertaken initiatives to promote hygiene practices and to spray insecticides in dengue hotspots and individual households across the province.
“The insecticide is being sprayed in outbreak areas and locations where transmission of the disease is suspected,” Lo stated.
He further revealed that from the start of the year until the 30th week, there were 590 cases of dengue fever in Preah Vihear province alone. Among these cases, 395 involved children, with the highest number of outbreaks recorded in Choam Ksan, followed by Kulen, Tbeng Meanchey, and Preah Vihear town.
Encouragingly, Lo mentioned that there was a slight decline in cases during the 30th week, with 100 cases reported compared to the 112 recorded in the preceding week.
However, the National Dengue Control Program’s report brings the severity of the situation into focus.
According to the Ministry of Health, Cambodia witnessed 4,668 dengue fever cases with 10 fatalities over the last six months.
These figures show an alarming surge, nearly doubling compared to the same period in the previous year. As the monsoon continues, maintaining vigilance against dengue fever becomes increasingly crucial.