Dengue fever patients in a Philippine hospital (Photo: Xinhua/VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – The health sectors in Thailand and the Philippines are working to deal with dengue fever outbreaks, which have been a pressing issue since the beginning of 2019.

Dengue cases in the Philippines kept surging to reach nearly 116, with 491 deaths from January 1 to July 6, the country’s Department of Health said on July 20.

The most affected area is Western Visayas region, which has the greatest number of reported cases so far this year at 15,826, followed by Calabarzon with 12,780 cases, Soccsksargen 9,572 cases, Northern Mindanao 9,354 cases, and Central Visayas 9,259 cases.

On July 15, the Philippine government declared a national dengue alert, urging regional health offices to step up surveillance, case management and outbreak response in primary health facilities and hospitals, as well as through community and school-based health education campaigns.

The country is undertaking a nationwide public information campaign in response to what it calls as the "4-S method", which stands for "search and destroy" mosquito-breeding sites, employ "self-protection measures", "seek early consultation", and "support fogging or spraying" in areas where an increase in cases is registered for two consecutive weeks to prevent an impending outbreak.

Also on July 20, Thai Ministry of Public Health said it will find measures to curb the spread of the disease, as the number of infections has reached 49,174 since the start of this year.

Health minister Anutin Charnvirakul said he has instructed state health agencies to place dengue surveillance system nationwide, and to report the number of new cases.

Local authorities and volunteers across Thailand will spray chemicals to kill mosquitoes, said Anutin, adding that residents are advised to destroy mosquito-breeding grounds in and around their houses.-VNA