Weekly clean-ups encouraged

July 18, 2012

MALAYSIA – Ten minutes a week – that’s enough time to spruce up one’s surroundings to prevent the dengue menace from spreading. Health Director-General Datuk Seri Dr Hasan Abdul Rahman lamented that while the people are “very aware” of the dangers posed by Aedes mosquitoes, they do not regularly clean up their homes and surrounding areas to ensure it does not become dengue breeding grounds.

“The public do not practise dengue eradication techniques regularly. They think it won’t happen to them. This attitude needs to change,” he said after presenting prizes to schools at the Inter School Anti-Aedes Rangers prize-giving ceremony, yesterday.

Sponsored by SC Johnson, the competition on dengue prevention involved more than 2,000 students from 100 schools in Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya, Selangor, Johor and Penang who visited homes to educate owners on effective prevention methods to eradicate Aedes mosquitoes.

SMK Bakri in Kajang won the grand prize for visiting 16,337 homes. The team won a cash prize worth RM10,000, a trophy and hamper.

Dr. Hasan said cleaning up the surroundings could not be a one-off occurence, but a continuous effort as Aedes mosquitoes only a week to fully mature.

“By cleaning up our homes and surroundings once a week, we will be able to break the life cycle of the mosquito,” he said.

He said dengue cases had gone up by 13% for the first seven months of this year. From January to July 14 this year, there were 12,518 cases as opposed to the 11,124 during the same period last year. At the same time, 25 deaths were recorded, an increase of six cases as compared to last year’s 19.

Selangor recorded the highest number, with 5,713 cases and 11 deaths, followed by the Federal Territories (1,186 cases and three deaths), Johor (901 cases and one death) and Perak (871 cases and three deaths).

Dr. Hasan said the ministry inspected 1.7 million premises for the first six months of this year, of which 19,721 or 1.16% were found to be Aedes breeding grounds.

He said from January to May this year, the ministry compounded 8,703 premises found to be degue breeding grounds and collected RM3.8 million worth of compound fines.

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Category: Community

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