In an effort to curb the spread of dengue, the Penang state government has adopted an application called ‘Predict and Beat Dengue’ as a monitoring tool to detect high-risk areas early.
Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said the app, which cost more than RM420,000, allows the authorities to monitor the dengue epidemic across the state as well as plan and coordinate efforts to control the outbreak in areas most at risk.
“This is a way for us to establish more community participation in dengue prevention and control,” he told reporters after the launch of the Dengue Awareness Carnival 2018 at Tech Dome Komtar in Penang today.
Chow, who is also Padang Kota assemblyperson, said Penang is facing an alarming increase in dengue cases.
He said from the beginning of the year to the 45th week, the cumulative number of dengue cases reported stood at 4,960 cases compared to 2,273 cases reported for the same period last year.
“More worrying is the increase in deaths that we observed in the last two weeks, beginning from the 43rd week three deaths were registered,” he said.
He said in the 45th week Penang also recorded the highest number of weekly cases this year, which was about 190 cases.
Meanwhile, Penang Health Department deputy director Dr Rokiah Mohd said the cause of the increase in dengue cases this year was due to the weather change.
During the hot, rainy season the aedes mosquitoes will breed comfortably in standing water accumulated after the rains, she said.
Large scale integrated operations involving all agencies and residents had been carried out to ensure a clean environment free of aedes breeding, thereby minimising the risk of dengue transmission, she added.