More than 95 per cent of dengue clusters this year declared closed so far: NEA

A photo taken on Nov 21, 2019, shows a dengue alert banner in Jurong West Street 61. Jurong West Street 61 is one of the dengue clusters that have been declared closed. ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

SINGAPORE - The wet weather in Singapore the past few weeks has apparently not affected dengue numbers, with almost all dengue clusters declared closed.

Clusters are declared closed when no new cases are reported within two weeks of the last onset date.

About 96 per cent of the 1,494 dengue clusters discovered from the start of this year have been declared closed as of Dec 14, the National Environment Agency (NEA) said in a statement on Friday (Dec 20).

The agency conducted 849,000 islandwide inspections between January and November this year, in which 14,800 mosquito breeding habitats were uncovered.

About 7,500 enforcement actions were taken against owners of premises for breeding mosquitoes.

The large clusters in Jurong West Street 61, Bedok Reservoir Road, Jurong East Street 13, Rivervale Crescent and Chuan Hoe Avenue were among those that have been declared closed. They are currently under surveillance.

As of Dec 14, there are still 67 active clusters in Singapore. They are in areas such as Choa Chu Kang Avenue 2, Elias Road, Jalan Bangau, Bukit Mugliston, Begonia Drive and Sunrise Avenue.

Despite the fact that the majority of the clusters notified have been declared closed, the agency's Gravitrap surveillance system revealed a 20 per cent increase in the Aedes aegypti adult mosquito population last month, compared to October 2019.

The Aedes aegypti mosquito is the primary vector for the transmission of dengue.

The number of Aedes aegypti larval habitats detected in homes was also 20 per cent higher in November than in October.

About 60 per cent of the Aedes aegypti mosquito breeding habitats detected across the island since January this year were found in homes, said the NEA.

To ensure that residents play their part in reducing the mosquito population in their homes and the neighbourhood, information on areas with relatively higher Aedes aegypti mosquito population has been made available on the agency's myENV app.

Said the agency: "Making available information on areas with relatively higher Aedes aegypti mosquito population will serve as a useful indicator for early intervention, to facilitate targeted action by key stakeholders, community partners and residents."

It also urged residents and other stakeholders to continue taking proactive measures to prevent the spread of the disease.

All residents living in dengue cluster areas are also strongly encouraged to cooperate with NEA officers, and to facilitate inspections and indoor misting in their homes.

Residents living in dengue cluster areas should also protect themselves, by applying mosquito repellent regularly and keeping their homes free of stagnant water.

Join ST's WhatsApp Channel and get the latest news and must-reads.