1 May 2015

Chikungunya virus on the rise in Cook Islands

1:36 pm on 1 May 2015

The Cook Islands ministry of health says the Chikungunya outbreak is on the rise and is likely to have not reached its peak yet.

The director of hospital health services Henry Tikaka says there have been about 324 recorded cases of the virus since late last year.

He says most of them are on Rarotonga, but there are some cases on the outer islands.

Dr Tikaka says the ministry is working with the public to contain the virus, including spraying properties of those who have been infected.

He says it is encouraging the public to sleep with mosquito nets and clean up potential mosquito breeding grounds.

"I don't think we have reached the peak of the outbreak yet, but I may be wrong, time will tell. From the experience of our neighbouring countries, it could get worse, that's the experience. But with what we are putting in place we are just hoping that we will be able to control it and stop it from getting worse."

Henry Tikaka says the outbreak is putting some strain on hospital services, but it is managing.

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