DENGUE fever has claimed 33 lives in Selangor so far this year as of last week.
State health officers are worried that more people will fall victim to the disease due to the hot weather and intermittent rains which can result in an increase in mosquito breeding spots.
In the same period in 2019, Selangor saw 46,121 confirmed dengue cases, with 37 deaths.
Based on the figures, Selangor is now recording an average of 155 confirmed cases daily or 1,085 cases a week.
Health authorities in all nine districts -– Gombak, Hulu Langat, Hulu Selangor, Klang, Kuala Langat, Kuala Selangor, Petaling, Sabak Bernam and Sepang -– are on alert as certain neighbourhoods have been tagged as hotspot areas.
It is learned that the Health Ministry has identified 30 hotspots in Selangor.
Selangor health, welfare, women empowerment and family committee chairman Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud said hospitals were seeing an increase in the number of dengue cases.
In Petaling, 12,333 cases and eight deaths were recorded while Hulu Langat recorded three deaths out of 6,689 cases.
Gombak district has 4,986 confirmed cases with seven deaths while Klang saw 6,169 cases with eight casualties.
The number of cases in other districts are 1,941 with two deaths in Sepang, 1,184 with four deaths in Hulu Selangor, 660 cases and one death in Kuala Langat, followed by 671 cases in Kuala Selangor and 103 cases in Sabak Bernam.
Dr Siti Mariah said that while the recorded total from January to Aug 8 was 24.7% or 11,385 fewer cases compared to the same corresponding period of 2019, the current weekly figures were worrying.
Selangor recorded a staggering 72,543 confirmed dengue cases and 56 dengue-related deaths in the whole of last year.
“Our health inspectors are concerned about the weekly reported number of dengue cases.
“We fear there will be more cases as some areas are still labelled hotspot areas, ” said Dr Siti Mariah.
A hotspot area is when there are many confirmed cases recorded for over 30 days in one locality.
According to doctors, classic symptoms of dengue fever are high fever, headache, body ache (both muscle and bone), weakness, vomiting, sore throat, altered taste sensation and rashes, among others.
Experts say that due to the unbearable pain, the term break-bone fever is sometimes used to describe dengue fever. And dengue haemorrhagic fever is particularly dangerous.
There is no vaccine available yet against dengue fever.
Klang Municipal Council (MPK) Health Department director Azmi Muji said the public, especially those living in areas with a high number of dengue cases, should take preventive measures such as keeping their premises clean to eliminate Aedes mosquito breeding grounds.
“Clean the inside of the house as well as your surroundings.
“Spend 10 minutes a week to ensure empty containers are not filled with water as these can become breeding sites, ” he said.
Azmi said everyone must be committed to fighting the menace.
“Most of the time, it is the people’s indifference that hampers our efforts.
“But the council is committed in curbing the dengue menace in the Klang district, ” he said.
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