Four additional locally acquired dengue fever cases have been reported in Hawaii, bringing the outbreak total to 92, according to The Hawaii Department of Health (HDOH). This is the largest dengue outbreak in Hawaii since 2001.
Of the confirmed cases, 79 are Hawaii residents and 13 are visitors. 70 cases have been adults; 22 have been children, health officials note.
But don’t change your travel plans to Hawaii says Dr. Lyle Petersen, director of the CDC’s Division of Vector-Borne Diseases. “This isn’t a huge outbreak compared to elsewhere.” The CDC does have a Dengue in Hawaii alert on their website with advice on how to prevent mosquito bites.
Hawaii officials announced the following Community Information Meetings on the Dengue outbreak starting tomorrow at the following locations:
- Tomorrow Tuesday November 24th at 6:30 PM at the Mountain View School Cafeteria
- Friday November 27th at 6:00PM at the Ocean View Community Center
- Monday November 30th at 6:00PM at the Waimea Middle School Cafeteria
- Tuesday December 1st at 6:30PM at the Kohala High School Cafeteria
- Thursday December 3rd at 6:30 at the Pahoa High School Cafeteria
The HDOH also issued dengue fever brochures in 10 languages to include Japanese, Tagalog and Samoan.
Dengue fever is a virus that is transmitted or spread by infected mosquitoes and not directly from person to person. Dengue Fever is not endemic or common to Hawaii. It was likely introduced by a person who contracted the virus in another area of the world and became infectious while in Hawaii.
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Robert Herriman is a microbiologist and the Editor-in-Chief of Outbreak News Today and the Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch