20 Jun 2007

Weather contributing to dengue fever cases in American Samoa

3:17 pm on 20 June 2007

The chairman of the LBJ hospital board is advising people in American Samoa to use the right protection following the death of a 20 year old from dengue fever last weekend.

The death is the first in several years, and has raised alarm bells, with the territory's health department stepping up its awareness programmes, and warning that more cases are pending.

There are currently 29 confirmed cases, and hospital chairman, Charles Warren, says those numbers can be controlled if people use the right deterrent with spray cans being the first choice.

"We see a lot of mosquito coils here and I don't think with a lot of local folks they use repellent a lot and I think they will be well served if they pick up a can of that at least for the kids and the older folks to make sure they're protected."

Meanwhile, the health department says if the situation is not nipped in the bud now the country could be heading for a dengue epidemic