With nearly 3,700 chikungunya cases reported in the Dominican Republic since March, Health Minister Freddy Hidalgo came out said the country face a chikungunya epidemic, according to a Dominican Today report today.

Image/CDC
Image/CDC

Hidalgo said despite that the outbreaks are centered in Nigua and Haina, in southern San Cristóbal province, cases began to be detected in other provinces after Easter Week, “so technically speaking, the country faces an epidemic.”

In addition, the health minister noted that the chikungunya virus is new to  the country; hence, the population has virtually no immunity to it and will likely spread.  For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page.

Hidalgo warned city councils to improve on trash collections, and the public eliminate mosquito breeding areas.

Last week, the Dominican Republic health ministry said  there were 3,690 suspected chikungunya cases in San Cristobal alone with confirmed new cases of the mosquito borne virus in Hato Mayor, Santo Domingo and the National District.

Since the PAHO / WHO received on December 6, 2013 the confirmation of the first cases of autochthonous transmission of Chikungunya virus in the Americas, the number of suspecxted and confirmed cases are more than 35,000.