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Thursday 27 January 2005

UN seeks $67 million for increased risk of malaria, dengue fever after tsunami

Warning of an increased risk of deadly mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria and dengue fever sweeping across South Asian countries ravaged by last month’s tsunami, the United Nations health agency issued an urgent appeal today for $67 million to ward off a potentially severe public health crisis over the next six months.

With stagnant water creating favourable breeding conditions for the insects, the World Health Organization (WHO) has deployed experts and set up early warning and surveillance systems while public health laboratory services are being restored including provision of rapid diagnostic kits, medical supplies and equipment, and training of local health workers.

“Proper management of dengue hemorrhagic fever can reduce fatality rates and save many lives,” WHO’s Regional Director for Southeast Asia Samlee Plianbangchang said of the endemic disease, where rapid diagnosis and early treatment can make the difference between life and death. Unless proper treatment is given promptly, the patient may go into shock and die.

Read the Full Article at UN News Centre
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