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According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) dengue fever is now the world’s fastest spreading tropical disease. They say number of annual cases has increased 30 fold in the last 50 years. In Thailand the numbers of cases is expected to spike this year according to a researcher, experts from across Asia have met to discuss the introduction of the first ever dengue vaccine to control and prevent the disease.
Dengue fever, which is known for its severe flu like symptoms is endemic in 128 countries compared to only 9 countries in 1970. In Asia 67 million are affected by the disease each year.
It is expected that in 2016 the number of cases in Thailand will be on par with the outbreak in 1987 when around 170,000 cases were reported.
“We have had a lot of patients in this season. It’s a big predictor that we’ll have a big problem with dengue this year. If even in the cool season we have dengue, then it will be worse in the following year” in the hot and rainy seasons, Usa said on the sidelines of the Asia Dengue Summit organized by ADVA.
At a two day summit in Bangkok that ended yesterday doctors and government officials tried to identify the best way to use the French Sanofi’s dengue fever vaccination, Dengvaxia and other control and prevention tools being developed.