More than 100 people were infected with Chikungunya in La’ak commune’s Ping village in Ratanakkiri province’s O’Chum district, according to deputy provincial governor Nhem Sam Oeun.
Sam Oeun told The Post on May 23 that the cases were discovered 10 days ago and that most of the patients had already recovered and been discharged from hospital.
“This happened in just one village in O’Chum district. We have yet to see it happen in other places. In this area of the forest there are a lot of mosquitoes – especially Aedes aegypti. But the provincial authorities and health officials have sprayed the village with insecticide and the anti-dengue larvicide “Abate” to kill the mosquito larva,” he said.
Sam Oeun added that the authorities and officials had intervened in a timely manner and doctors had been on site to advise people and take the critically ill patients to the hospital for medical treatment, while those with minor illness receive treatment at home.
Ratanakkiri provincial health department director Ung Ratana told The Post that the hospital working group had wrapped up their work in the district without much difficulty.
The Ministry of Health said the Chikungunya virus is spread to people by the bite of Aedes aegypti mosquito and people of all ages were susceptible to the disease.
According to the ministry, the three most common symptoms of infection are a fever for three to four days, joint pain and skin rashes. The disease does not generally cause death unless the patient has a combination of other factors such as having a simultaneous infection with dengue fever, malaria or encephalitis.
The ministry advised people to eradicate sources of Aedes aegypti mosquito larva such as places where stagnant water is pooling and thickets of brush nearby their homes.
The ministry also advised residents to avoid sleeping in the dark during the day time and to always sleep under a mosquito net. Children and the elderly should wear long-sleeved shirts and pants to protect again mosquito bites and people should open the doors and windows of houses so that enough daylight can enter to ward off the mosquitoes.