Health workers in Thailand said 2015 was a bad year for dengue fever and resulted in more than a hundred deaths and tens of thousands of cases.
Ms Aya Tabata, the coordinator of the Stop Dengue, Protect Your Family campaign, said that 2015 was the worst year for Thailand since 2010.
“From January to November this year there were 102 deaths and a total of 102,761 cases of dengue recorded in Thailand.”
Ms Tabata explained to Karen News that the situation could have been much worse
along the Thai Burma border, if the community, hospitals, health workers
and international non-government organisations had not taken part
in public health information campaigns to try to combat dengue.
“The Stop Dengue campaign distributed newsletters, posters, videos, radio community announcements and leaflets in three languages – Thai, Karen and Burmese –
to schools, refugee camps, hospitals and clinics on the Thai Burma border.”
Ms Tabata said the community and health worker response was crucial in helping to prevent severe dengue.
She said that as school students were hit hard by dengue it was important for schools to take preventative measures.
“The research indicates that more than 45% of dengue cases were school students. It is important schools carry out preventative measures such as cleaning the school grounds, getting rid of waste water, making sure all water containers are covered and using larvicide sand.”
Ms Tabata said that teachers at migrant schools in the area had responded well to the stop dengue campaign.
“We supplied heath information to 63 schools and teachers from 27 schools had specifically requested extra materials, guidelines and resources to run activities to help protect their students. We also distributed mosquito nets to nurseries at these schools.”
Ms Tabata said many people in the community had donated time, funds or resources to support the Stop Dengue Campaign and said the donation of hundreds mosquito nets from the British Community in Thailand Foundation for the Needy was of great benefit.
“We were able to distribute mosquito nets that BCTFN donated into many school nurseries and to clinics – it was a great help to these communities and the Stop Dengue campaign.”