On Wednesday, May 13, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) warned city residents of the risk of dengue fever ahead of the annual rainy season. The BMA will be launching a public awareness campaign citywide warning people to eradicate stagnant water, a breeding ground for mosquitoes. The rainy season in Thailand generally runs from June until October.
Thailand reported a significant uptick in dengue fever infections in 2019, declaring an epidemic in July. Officials reported 125,000 cases of dengue fever in 2019 with 131 associated deaths, up from 2018 levels of 50,000 recorded cases and 115 associated deaths.
Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne disease found mostly in urban and semi-urban areas. Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle and joint pain, fatigue, nausea, and rash. Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF) is a potentially deadly complication that is characterized by high fever, enlargement of the liver, and hemorrhaging.
Individuals present in Bangkok and other areas of Thailand during the rainy season are advised to take measures to protect themselves from mosquito bites (e.g. by wearing covering clothing, using insect repellent, and sleeping in a screened-in or air-conditioned room) and to eliminate possible mosquito breeding grounds on their properties (e.g. small pockets of fresh water, such as rainwater that has collected in cans, bottles, tires, flowerpots, clogged gutters, etc.).
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