Wednesday, 17 May 2017

A SPIKE in the number of dengue cases in Hulu Langat has the Selangor state government worried

Dengue still a threat

Killing the killers: A Klang Municipal Council employee carrying out fogging at Taman Valeria Vindula Delias in Bandar Bukit Tinggi.
Killing the killers: A Klang Municipal Council employee carrying out fogging at Taman Valeria Vindula Delias in Bandar Bukit Tinggi.
A SPIKE in the number of dengue cases in Hulu Langat has the Selangor state government worried, especially with over 48% of the total deaths in the state since January being recorded in the district. 
The district has the second highest number of dengue cases in the state with 4,927 cases and 14 deaths.
Petaling district, which consists of urban areas including Petaling Jaya, Subang and Shah Alam, had the highest number of cases with 5,958 cases and six deaths as at May 13 this year.
In Klang district, there were 3,395 dengue cases with five deaths while Gombak had 2,057 cases with one death reported.
Sepang had 990 cases with one death, Kuala Langat 590 cases and one death while Hulu Selangor had 326 cases and one death.
The rural districts of Kuala Selangor and Sabak Bernam had 209 and 82 dengue cases respectively.
Selangor Health, Welfare, Women and Family Affairs Committee chairman Dr Daroyah Alwi said the number of dengue cases for Hulu Langat had been steadily increasing in the last two months.
“It is slightly higher than Petaling district but we are still worried and are closely monitoring the situation,” she said.
However Petaling district still has the highest accumulated number of cases for the year with 5,958 cases.
The deaths, she added, were sporadic and most of the victims were also battling diseases such as diabetes which made it difficult for them to fight the fever, resulting in their deaths.
The hotspots in Hulu Langat include Bandar Baru Bangi, Semenyih, Rinching and several areas in Ampang.
The dengue statistic that are usually found on the Selangor Health Department website were surprisingly taken down.
In Klang, Bandar Bukit Tinggi 2 had seen a rise in the number of dengue cases, raising fears among residents in the neighbourhood.
Residents claim that it was the first time in 12 years that the area had recorded a substantial number of cases over a short period.
Statistics provided by the Klang Municipal Council (MPK) confirmed that the area had recorded 10 cases over the first 10 days of the month.
Taman Valeria Vindula Delias, Residents’ Association chairman Jimmy Yap said the residents felt that a nearby drain, which collapsed some weeks ago, could be the cause of the rise in the number of the cases.
He said the collapsed drain collected water in the underground and served as an ideal mosquito breeding ground.
“My wife contracted dengue on May 3, followed by several other residents from the neighbourhood.
“We are worried and hope there will be no more cases in the area,” he said, adding that the council had done fogging in the area after the first case was reported.
“Council health department director Azmi Muji said a total of 2,407 cases were reported in the municipality until April 30 this year compared with 6,380 cases for the whole of last year.
He said the number of deaths caused by dengue was three this year compared with 14 last year.
“Kampung Johan Setia is the most affected area with a total of 34 cases and a death so far this year,” he said
“We have identified back lanes as one of the potential breeding spots for Aedes larvae because residents tend to dump various types of unwanted stuff there.
“Some of the things, including old or broken furniture, could become a potential spot to retain clear water that ends up as potential breeding ground,” he said.
Daroyah said the councils had a hard time battling the problem due to the lack of cooperation from residents.
She said most times people refused to open their doors to officers during the dengue spot checks making it hard for the council to find the larvae breeding grounds.
“There are times when the people are not at home which is why local authorities have resorted to sending officers at night to speak to residents but they still refuse to let them in,” she said.
Officers she added could provide valuable advice to homeowners on the possible breeding grounds as well as ways to tackle the situation.
“It is important that residents play their part and cooperate with the officers and local authorities to help eradicate dengue,” she added.
Over in Petaling Jaya, dengue cases had been decreasing over the past two years with 7,751 dengue cases in 2015 and 5,620 cases last year.
In January, there were 320 reported cases followed by 300 in February, 342 in March and 269 last month.
“We have been actively carrying out inspections at households around the city and we checked 2,226 houses last month,” said Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) public relations officer Zainun Zakaria.
She added that based on the door-to-door inspection last month, 413 premises had Aedes breeding grounds.
In March, they checked over 4,000 houses due to the increasing dengue cases and the rainy season.
“Apart from residential areas we also inspected commercial, industrial and council-owned premises as well,” she said.
Last month, MBPJ formed six Search-and-Destroy Aedes Ranger (Sedar) teams comprising officers from the Health, Landscape, Engineering, Community Development, Management Services and Valuation departments.
These teams were tasked to carry out at least one search-and-destroy activity every week, clear all council-owned premises and sprinkle Abate into stagnant water to kill the larvae and prevent mosquitoes from breeding.
The Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ), which previously had the most number of cases in Selangor, dropped to second place based on recent statistics.
So far this year, MPSJ had 1,855 dengue cases a decrease of 51% compared to last year’s 3,769 cases. There have been three deaths to date this year, two in January and one in March.
There are 12 hotspots in the municipality, with the most number of cases in Seri Serdang (six), followed by Seri Kembangan (four), Subang Jaya and Kinrara (one each).
The Health Ministry will be organising a gotong-royong in SP8, Taman Saujana Puchong soon as the number of dengue cases are increasing in the area.
“We hope all councillors and residents’ committee can work together and organise more activities with residents in the area to fight the spread of dengue,” said council president Datuk Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan.
Dengue cases in Shah Alam has decreased since the beginning of this year.
From January to May 5, 2,632 cases and four deaths were reported. There were 140 dengue cases reported between April 30 to May 6, compared to 162 cases the week before.
Shah Alam City Council corporate communications head Shahrin Ahmad said that the council identified 26 dengue hotspots, among which were the commercial area in Section 7 and Dataran Otomobil, Section 15.
In total, 6,510 premises had been inspected and fogging was carried out at 224,515 locations.
MBSA had issued 257 compounds and nine construction sites were ordered to temporarily close upon detection of larvae.


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