THE number of dengue cases in Petaling Jaya has reduced, thanks to the 173 Search and Destroy Aedes Rangers (Sedar) teams set up in the city.
Under the programme, voluteers comprising schoolchildren, residents, construction workers, office workers and Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) officers have been tasked with working to reduce dengue cases in their respective areas.
Currently, there are 34 student Sedar teams, four from construction sites, seven from MBPJ and the rest of the teams consist of residents.
“Sedar was initiated in 2014 when the dengue outbreak was at its peak and we realised that we could not check the problem without the help of the community,” said MBPJ health department director Dr Abdul Ghalib Sulaiman at the Sedar appreciation ceremony held at the MBPJ Civic Hall.
The event saw Sedar teams receive awards for their efforts, in addition to being treated to refreshments and a lucky draw.
Dr Abdul Ghalib praised the Sedar teams for their commitment and hard work.
“There has been a 38% decrease in cases between 2016 and 2017 within MBPJ’s jurisdiction and we are striving to bring this down to zero in the near future,” he said.
At the event, there were also talks by Dr Lee Soo Cheng from the Petaling district health office and scientific officer Khadijah Khairuddin on the dengue situation in Selangor and ways to tackle the problem.
Also present was Selangor Health, Welfare, Women and Family Affairs Committee chairman Dr Daroyah Alwi, who praised the Sedar volunteers for their success.
“The figures speak for themselves and I hope everyone will keep up the good work and continue the search-and-destroy efforts,” she said, adding that the dengue cases had dropped to 3,489 in 2017 from 5,620 in 2016.
She said the state had always made combating dengue its top priority and a task force meeting was held every two weeks at state level and once a week at district level.
Dr Daroyah urged other communities and local authorities to follow in the footsteps of MBPJ’s Sedar team to eradicate dengue statewide.
“In fact, the state has directed all councillors to chair a dengue task force in their respective zones.
“So all councillors will be responsible for tackling and monitoring dengue in their respective areas,” she added.