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New Taipei ramps up dengue fever disinfection efforts

2018/08/21 13:51:40

Taipei, Aug. 21 (CNA) New Taipei, the most populous city in Taiwan, is taking more aggressive steps to rid the city of the mosquitoes that spread dengue fever as more cases of the disease are reported there.

A new dengue fever case was confirmed in the city of nearly 4 million people on Monday, bringing the total number of people infected by the mosquito-borne disease there this year to 12, according to Centers for Disease Control (CDC) data.

The outbreak indicates that the city's disinfection cleanups missed some spots, New Taipei City Health Commissioner Lin Chi-hung (林奇宏) reported at a city government meeting Tuesday.

As a result, disinfection measures will be reinforced starting on Wednesday in the affected Qionglin ward of Xinzhuang District to eliminate possible breeding areas of vector mosquitoes, Lin said.

All of the indigenous cases of dengue fever infection in New Taipei this year have arisen from Xinzhuang District, including three cluster cases in Qionglin.

Sterilization operations will be performed outdoors and within the 346 Qionglin households close to the cluster infection, the New Taipei City government said in a statement.

It urged the targeted households to allow people doing the work to enter their homes and complete their tasks. Those who refuse can get spray cans containing a mosquito killing agent at the Qionglin ward chief's office so they can do the job on their own.

Those who fail to disinfect their homes or do not return the spray cans before Aug. 24 will be subject to a fine of up to NT$300,000 (US$9,774) based on the Communicable Disease Control Act, the city government said.

As of Sunday, there have been 19 indigenous cases of dengue fever infection reported around Taiwan, including two in Taipei, two in Chiayi County, and one each in Taoyuan, Taichung and Kaohsiung, CDC data shows.

(By Sunrise Huang and Elizabeth Hsu)