Dengue fever is a mosquito borne infection that causes headache, fever, exhaustion, severe muscle and joint pain, swollen glands, vomiting and rash. Taiwan is battling its worst summer outbreak of dengue in over a decade as dengue cases have exceeded 4,000 in the course of four months.
Taiwan's disease control center revealed that the total number of dengue fever cases reached 4,343, with 10 deaths, since the start of this summer. It is considered the worst outbreak on the island since the health authority began systematic tracking of the disease in 2003.
Latest official figures suggest that Tainan city has reported 3,825 dengue cases, making it the hardest hit, and neighboring Kaohsiung city had 445 cases. Tainan's executive authority set aside 30 million Taiwanese dollars (about $920,000) to help the city with prevention of dengue fever and control efforts.
A research team at Taiwan Ocean University has succeeded in cultivating small insectivorous rice fish and will release them to get rid of mosquito larvae in drains and ponds.