The Fiji Ministry of Health has recorded 143 dengue fever cases since the beginning of the year, according to a Fiji Times report. Health officials note that Western Division has reported the most at 88, followed by Northern Division (30) and the Central/Eastern Division (25).

An Aedes aegypti mosquito prepares to bite a human. Image/USDA
An Aedes aegypti mosquito prepares to bite a human.

Health officials are urging the public to take immediate actions to destroy dengue mosquito breeding places. Removing dengue mosquito breeding places will ultimately lead to a decrease in the number of dengue positive cases. This includes removing/emptying flower pots, flower pot plates, roof gutters, tins, cans, unused tires, coconut shells, airconditioning trays, blocked drains and drums.

Dengue infects nearly 400 million people across more than 120 countries each year. Most survive with few or no symptoms, but more than two million annually develop what can be a dangerous dengue hemorrhagic fever, which kills more than 25,000 people each year.

Dengue can cause a high fever, severe headaches, severe pain behind the eyes, rash and joint, muscle or bone pain. Dengue hemorrhagic fever occurs when blood leaks from blood vessels into other parts of the body, which can lead to failure of the circulatory system, shock and possibly death, without prompt treatment.