PUTRAJAYA: Anyone, even a former top health ministry officer, could be unknowingly breeding the “silent killer” – the aedes mosquito – at their homes or other premises.
A check recently found that the officer was among those who were slapped with compounds for the offence.
The Health Ministry’s disease control director Dr Ramlee Rahmat said the situation showed that people must check their own surroundings diligently and ensure that there were no breeding grounds, such as stagnant water, for the larvae.
He said that in the first week of this month, 499 breeding grounds had been identified and 22.9% of them were at construction sites, 8.2% at factories and 3.8% at vacant land.
There were 27 breeding grounds at 12 construction sites in Selangor, he added.
“You can even bring aedes mosquitoes home from the office or anywhere and vice-versa.”
“The mosquitoes can be transported anywhere via vehicles though their flight range is very limited,” he said yesterday.
Dr Ramlee said there were 1,049 dengue cases in the first week of this month, of which 997 were dengue and 52 were haemorrhagic fever. Only one death has been recorded.
Admitting that the incidence of dengue was still high, he said five of the seven states being monitored closely saw an increase in the first week of this month compared with the week before.
They were Selangor, Penang, Johor, Pahang and Kedah while the Federal Territory and Perak showed a slight decline, he said.
He reminded the public that there was no vaccine for dengue and doctors could only treat the symptoms.
“Prevention is the safest,” he said, adding that those with fever should seek treatment immediately.
On the hand, foot and mouth disease (HFM) cases in Penang, Dr Ramlee said 43 cases were detected among children between Jan 1 and Wednesday.
He said the HFM disease occurred every now and then, adding there were 364 cases nationwide last year compared with 459 in 2000, 776 in 2001, 1,384 in 2002 and 436 in 2003.
HFM, usually not serious, could infect children below 10 and preventive measures included avoiding crowded places and practising good personal hygiene, he added.
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