World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Global and regional rise of diseases spread by mosquitoes

Global and regional rise of diseases spread by mosquitoes

Monday 7 April 2014, Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Noumea, New Caledonia –

The Pacific is currently experiencing a growing epidemic of diseases spread by mosquitoes. The global concern for these diseases is highlighted today, World Health Day; this year’s theme is vector-borne diseases.

More than half the world’s population is at risk from diseases spread by vectors (mosquitoes, ticks or flies).

In the Pacific, 21 documented outbreaks of diseases transmitted by mosquitoes have been reported by 12 countries and territories during the past 15 months: 15 outbreaks of dengue, three of chikungunya and three of Zika fever.

‘Thousands of people have already been affected by this epidemic wave in the region and we estimate that the risk of further spread is high and could last for some years at the regional level,’ says Dr Yvan Souarès, Acting Director of the Public Health Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

‘A number of factors support this assessment: the low immunity of the population; the mosquitoes capable of carrying the virus being present in most parts of the region; and the high mobility of the population, especially through airline travel, which facilitates the spread of the diseases.’

There are measures that governments and communities can take to reduce the risks and protect people from infection, such as strengthening mosquito control, disease surveillance, laboratory testing, and prevention and response systems.

‘Considerable work has been done and progress has been made in these directions by countries and regional agencies over the last decades under the Pacific Public Health Surveillance Network, but a lot more needs to be done to face the current unprecedented situation,’ added Dr Souarès.

‘We need to learn from our neighbouring regions, particularly the Indian Ocean region, that have had similar experiences over the past ten years. For example, a large chikungunya outbreak spread from 2004 to 2007, infecting a third of the population of La Reunion Island and costing more than € 60 million.’

‘We don’t want to see a similar crisis in our Pacific region. We will continue to support countries' efforts to respond to the current situation as best we can.’

On an individual level, all Pacific Islanders can take measures to avoid contracting and spreading these diseases by protecting themselves from mosquito bites while staying in or travelling to countries where the viruses are circulating.

A map showing the current epidemics and virus circulation in the region is attached to the media release and it is also available on the SPC website.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Demonetisation: Gordon Campbell On India’s Huge Socio-Economic Experiment

Without much coverage at all in the West, India has just been engaged for the past few weeks in one of the world’s biggest socio-economic experiments since the Cultural Revolution in China. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Death Of Fidel Castro

New Zealand likes to think we played our part – via the 1981 Springbok tour – in bringing the apartheid regime in South Africa to an end… Jacob Zuma treated the death of Fidel Castro at the weekend as an occasion to pay a heartfelt tribute to the thousands of Cuban soldiers who travelled across the world to inflict the first significant military defeat on the forces of white supremacy. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The US Election Home Stretch

Once again at the business end of a US election, the result will hinge on the same old bits of geography as always: the Five Crucial Counties in Ohio, the Two Crucial Counties in Pennsylvania and the I-4 Interstate Corridor in Florida that runs from Tampa Bay through Orlando to Daytona Beach. More>>

ALSO:

Meanwhile:

Haiti: $5 Million To Kick-Start Aid In Wake Of Hurricane Matthew

UN emergency fund allocates $5 million to kick-start assistance in wake of Hurricane Matthew More>>

ALSO:

Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>

ALSO:

Not Helen Clark: António Guterres Favourite For Next UN Secretary-General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Guterres has emerged as the clear favourite to become the next United Nations Secretary-General following the sixth secret ballot held today by the UN Security Council, which is expected to take a formal decision tomorrow and forward Mr. Guterres’ name to the 193-Member General Assembly for final confirmation. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news