DDC tackles dengue surge

DDC tackles dengue surge

The Department of Disease Control (DDC) has opened an emergency operations centre (EOC) to reduce the number of dengue patients after more than 15,000 people were diagnosed in the first five months of this year alone.

That figure was 5.4 times more than during the same period last year. So far, there have been 13 deaths from the disease.

On Friday, DDC director-general, Dr Thares Krasanairawiwong, said Thailand is experiencing a surge in patients suffering from mosquito-borne diseases, especially dengue.

Since Jan 1, there have been 15,399, with Nan, Trat, Chumphon, Chanthaburi and Tak provinces the worst hit, he said.

The DDC has deemed these figures alarming and opened the EOC to tackle the problem.

Dr Direk Khampaen, a deputy DDC director-general, said during the EOC’s launch that over one million village health volunteers nationwide will help to tackle outbreaks.

Most mosquito larvae, or dengue carriers, are found in temples, but schools, public offices and factories can also provide conditions conducive to its spread, with children aged five and up forming the largest group of sufferers.

Sophon Iamsirithavorn, another deputy director-general of the DDC, said that outbreaks usually happen during the rainy season when swamps become ideal habitats for mosquitos.

He suggested that people who develop related symptoms should seek out medical help and avoid buying medicines without a prescription.