By CCTV correspondent Rian Maelzer
BEIJING, March 2 (Xinhuanet) -- The World Health Organization calls Dengue fever one of the greatest threats to global health. The WHO says a hundred million new cases are reported each year -- mainly in urban areas of the tropics. Despite attempts to control the mosquitoes that spread the disease, the number of cases in Malaysia has witnessed a serious spike already this year.
Municipal crews swoop into action after several reports of dengue fever in this Kuala Lumpur suburb. They fog using chemicals aimed at controlling the aedes Egypti mosquitoes that spread dengue, which can breed in as little as a tablespoon of clear, stagnant water.
Municipal health workers follow up on every dengue case.
It’s in high density, lower income developments like this where dengue is most rampant.
To combat the disease, one Kuala Lumpur suburb is enlisting a mosquito species that’s benign to humans -- the toxo. It’s four times the size of the aedes Egypti and feeds only on plant nectar. But it’s beefy larvae devour the larvae of the dengue carrying species.
But there’s a drawback. The toxo requires large amounts of vegetation to survive, so this method won’t work in places that are urban jungle alone.
Conventional methods like inspections, fogging...and public education will remain crucial.
Only a combination of a concerted campaign against the mosquitoes -- and the public apathy that helps nurture them -- is going to turn the tide against this 21st century plague.