Dengue fever has killed five people in Samoa.
This was confirmed by the Director General of the Ministry of Health Leausa Dr Take Naseri, in response to questions by the Samoa Observer.
Leausa referred to the Dengue Serotype2 Outbreak report prepared by the M.O.H. Surveillance team.
According to the report the since the first occurrence of Dengue was confirmed on the 27 October, there has been a steady increase in the number of Dengue-like illness in Samoa.
“Majority of the total 1,788 cases reported to date are from Faleata, Vaimauga, Gagaemauga (Leauva’a) and Sagaga Districts. Cases are also being reported from all other areas including cases from Savaii,” the report reads.
“Of all cases diagnosed and reported (clinical and confirmed), males comprised 51 percent (920) of the total compared to 49 percent (868) of females.
“The age groups most affected are those between 1 - 19 years of age with a national attack rate of 9.3 per 1,000 population.
“No new registered dengue-related death since the last sitrep as of December 10.”
The report further indicates that dengue is an acute fever with any two of the following signs and symptoms: joint and muscle pains, maculopapular rash, severe headaches, nausea and vomiting, pains behind the eyes, bleeding and leucopenia.
The report adds that ongoing surveillance of vector borne (arboviral) disease whilst we enhance our Syndromic Surveillance System in order to improve timely reporting and to capture all cases.
“The M.O.H. Samoa continues to advocate and implement control measures for mosquito-borne diseases.”
The health sector emphasizes and highly recommended for control of mosquito breeding sites during this rainy season.
“Other usual prevention methods to avoid illness are also advised. An integrated response has seen communities and organizations work with M.O.H. to use chemical spraying in their respective locations,” says the report.