Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Officials warn of widespread dengue in '09

Officials warn of widespread dengue in '09

Officials warn of widespread dengue in '09

HEALTH officials have warned of a possible outbreak of dengue fever next year as the number of children seeking treatment continues into the disease's "low" season.  

"Every day, the hospital still receives more than 20 children with dengue fever," said Lam Eng Hour, deputy director of Phnom Penh's Kantha Bopha children's hospital. "We are worried this is a sign that the number [of infections] will be higher next year."

According to Lam Eng Hour, Kantha Bopha hospitals in both Phnom Penh and Siem Reap have received 5,552 dengue cases so far this year, of which 43 have been fatal. He said that, despite being a dramatic decrease from last year's 23,000 cases, children lining up for dengue treatment this late in the year is a bad sign for 2009.

"An outbreak can happen every two years," Lam Eng Hour said.

National statistics from January to November this year showed that throughout the country 8,783 cases have been recorded by national and Kantha Bopha hospitals, Ngan Chantha, the national dengue control program director at the Ministry of Health, told the Post Tuesday.

He added that the number of cases had risen to over 35,000 by this time last year, with 61 fatalities, and had reached nearly 40,000 by the end of the year.

"It is disconcerting if children still come for treatment at this time, but this year the number is very small compared to the last year," Ngan Chantha said.

Siem Reap still leads the country in infection cases with 1,733, followed by Phnom Penh with 1,620, Kampong Cham with 1,081 and Kandal with 1,020.

"These four provinces are leading the [number of dengue cases] every year due to their crowded populations," said Ngan Chantha, adding that half-built buildings and open sewers lead to higher numbers of the dengue mosquito.

Lam Eng Hour said that many parents were still unaware that they need to bring their children to the hospital immediately when they develop a high fever.

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • NOCC to contest petanque, tennis axe

    The National Olympic Committee of Cambodia will lobby hard over the next few weeks for the inclusion of the Kingdom’s most productive medal-earning sport, petanque, along with vovinam and tennis after the disciplines were left out of the initial list of 30 preferred sports for