Fogging 'not best way to fight dengue'

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 30 Jan 2003


PETALING JAYA: Fogging is not the most effective way to combat dengue, said a biomedical researcher from University Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM). 

Deputy dean (post-graduates and researchers) of UKM’s Allied Health Science Faculty Prof Dr Sallehudin Sulaiman said some insecticides were only good for about two weeks in killing adult aedes but the larvae would survive and turn into a new batch of mosquitoes in 12 days.  

However, some new generation of insecticides could kill adult mosquitoes and to some extent, could be fatal to larvae, he said. 

He added that regular fogging would also build up the mosquitoes’ resistance level and reduce the effectiveness of insecticides in the long run. 

“However, during an epidemic when there is a surge in the number of dengue cases in the same vicinity, fogging should be carried out to kill the transmission agent immediately. 

“One of our problems in fighting dengue is that we subscribe to ‘crisis mentality,’ as in that we tend to be relaxed when there are fewer reported cases and only react when the situation becomes alarming. 

“The public have to be held responsible, too, because the most effective way to fight dengue is by keeping the surrounding clean, giving no room for aedes mosquito to breed,” he said. 

Asked for his suggestion on how to contain the recent surge in dengue cases reported nationwide, especially in Selangor and Johor, Dr Sallehudin said the Health Ministry could carry out fogging from the air at “unattended areas” such as abandoned construction sites and cemeteries in a joint effort with the air force. 

He said it was common in developed countries to use helicopters and light aircraft to conduct Ultra-Low Volume (ULV) spraying to cover wide areas in the shortest time-frame to control mosquito-borne diseases.  

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