ALERT: Chikungunya Virus Outbreak in Malaysia

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Sun Aug 31, 2008 5:28 pm (PDT)

Received this information through an email. Please pay attention to the alert below and forward to all your family members and friends....

Attention, everyone

We have just been alerted that Chikungunya Virus Outbreak in Malaysia , spread by mosquitoes, is quite
serious. More than 2,000 people are infected down south. There are claims of unreported deaths.
Consult a health-care provider or visit the nearest hospital for chikungunya fever if you showed symptoms
such as fever, severe joint pains and rashes.

Four states have been hit, i.e. Johor, Malacca, N.Sembilan and Perak. The worst hit is Tangkak, Johor. 
Almost all elderly people (age 45 years and above) are infected with this virus. Many people who are
infected seek treatment from Tangkak Hospital every day. There were times beds were full, and the hospital
could not warded them. Therefore they were discharge after a half day treatment in the ward. This epidemic
outbreak has persisted for more than three months.

► Below is the chronological of this outbreak.
1. The disease is spread by the foreigner workers in the plantations.
2. Then the 'bugs' are passed down to the local planters, of which, their families are infected eventually.
3. Now people in this town (Tangkak) are infected as well as others in nearby towns and states.

► Symptoms of Chikungunya:
1. High fever
2. Rashes
3. Chronic joints pain (which will last for > 3months)
4. Concurrent deaths

► Recommendations:
1. Increase ad hoc facilities and manpower in district hospital and clinics.
2. Bring down the population of the vector (mosquitoes)
3. Quarantine the sick people who are infected with this virus.
4. Educate the public how to prevent and contain the disease.

Dr Teo Kim Lai (among the many courageous Pahlawan Volunteers veterinarians involved in the
investigation of the Nipah Virus Outbreak,1999 archived at http://www.pahlawan .com.my/voice/
VECrisis1. shtml) recommends that the sick should be quarantined as the virus is transmitted to humans
by the bite of infected mosquitoes. CHIK fever epidemics are sustained by human-mosquito- human
transmission.

Further information can be obtained from the Health Ministry's website at
http://www.moh. gov.my or call (603) 88810600/ 0700 during office hours

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