By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The number of dengue fever cases reported to date in the western hemisphere has eclipsed 2.5 million cases, surpassing the 2.415 million cases reported in 2015.

Western hemisphere map
Public domain image/ E Pluribus Anthony

According to the latest data from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), 2,508,799 cases have been reported, including 1,035 deaths.

This is the highest number of cases reported in a year in the region going back to 1980 (as far back as the PAHO data go back).

Brazil has accounted for nearly 2 million cases (1,993,271 and 634 deaths). This is followed by Nicaragua (114,584), Mexico (112,591), Colombia (89,781) and Honduras (78,727).

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According to the World Health Organization, dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection causing a severe flu-like illness and, sometimes causing a potentially lethal complication called severe dengue. Approximately, half of the world’s population is at risk and it affects infants, young children and adults. The incidence of dengue has increased 30-fold over the last 50 years. Up to 50-100 million infections are now estimated to occur annually in over 100 endemic countries, putting almost half of the world’s population at risk.