The Kandal provincial Department of Health said 35 people in two villages in Dei Ith commune, Kien Svay district, had contracted chikungunya.

Meanwhile, a working team continues to take measures to prevent the disease from spreading to other villages by spraying mosquito repellent and putting the anti-dengue larvicide Abate in every house.

Kandal health department director Kuoy Bunthoeurn told The Post on Monday that from the beginning of September until September 21, there have been a series of cases of chikungunya fever.

He said that all 35 patients, who suffered from fever and rashes were living in Koh Phos and in Dei Ith villages.

Bunthoeurn said: “There were 10 suspected victims in Dei Ith village, 25 in Koh Phos village, and a few others. So far, 29 of them have recovered and only six are receiving intensive care while slowly recovering too.”

With the discovery of these patients, Bunthoeurn said the team also went to educate the people in the two villages to be alert for the disease.

He said the team also advised all private hospitals to send suspected chikungunya patients to public hospitals to manage them easier and avoid danger to others.

“Citizens, too, if in doubt about these symptoms, should come to a public hospital or nearby health centre,” Bunthoeurn said.

Ministry of Health spokesperson Or Vandine told The Post on Monday that the chikungunya situation across the country is under control.

Vandine said the chikungunya outbreak in Kandal province is not a serious one because the provincial team intervened in time.

However, she could not confirm current figures of how many more people were infected across the country. In August, there were nearly 2,000 suspected cases of chikungunya in 15 provinces.

A press release issued by the Ministry of Health on July 23 said the first case was reported in Africa in 1953 and was discovered in Cambodia by the Institut Pasteur du Cambodge in 1961 and 2011.

Chikungunya is a disease caused by the chikungunya virus and is transmitted by female mosquito bites, especially during day time. The symptoms are similar to those of dengue fever, except that the person with chikungunya has fevers with red rashes and joint pain.

The disease is not life-threatening because it can be cured within a week or so, but the patient could suffer from arthritis for many years.

If a patient with chikungunya has other diseases such as dengue fever or malaria, it can be life-threatening, said the ministry.