East Hawaii News

Three Big Island Dengue Cases ‘Potentially Infectious’

January 22, 2016, 1:29 PM HST
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The Hawai'i Department of Health updated its map of potential areas of dengue fever infection, based on confirmed case information as of Wednesday, Jan. 20. DOH image.

The Hawai’i Department of Health updated its map of potential areas of dengue fever infection, based on confirmed case information as of Wednesday, Jan. 20. DOH image.

Three new cases of dengue fever were confirmed Friday afternoon by the Hawai’i Department of Health, bringing the total number of those infected since the initial onset of the disease on the Big Island in September to 233.

Only three of the total cases remain “potentially infectious” as of Friday, according to DOH officials.

Since Monday, ten new cases of dengue fever have been recorded, including nine in the past 48 hours.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, no cases were known to be infectious at the time. During those two days, only one confirmed case of dengue fever came in, however, that individual was no longer in an infectious state.

By Thursday, the number grew by six and included three individuals who were “potentially infectious,” leading to Friday’s increase count of three, with three listed as “potentially infectious.”

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The onset of illness date of those who could potentially infect mosquitoes is between last Tuesday and as recent as Sunday.

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In total, 211 Big Island residents have been infected by the disease, with an additional 22 visitors.

Forty-three children have been impacted by dengue, included the addition of one listed Friday. DOH lists children as those under the age of 18.

The access road to Waipio Valley, as well as Milolii and Hookena Beach Park, remains closed.

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The Hamakua-Kohala Health Center will host a meeting with the DOH and Civil Defense for the Honokaa community on Friday, Jan. 22 at 6 p.m. at the North Hawai’i Education and Research Center.

Community meetings also continue to be held on a weekly basis in both East and West Hawai’i.

Hilo sessions take place on Thursdays at 11:30 a.m. at the State Office Building, located on Aupuni Street. Kona sessions are held at the same time, but at the West Hawai’i Civic Center, Mayor’s Conference Room.

Tuesday sessions are being held at Yano Hall in Captain Cook, beginning at 12:30 p.m.

The community meetings provide updates and answers to questions from the community about the dengue fever outbreak on the Big Island, as well as education about the prevalence, transmission, and symptoms of dengue fever, along with outbreak response efforts, how to interpret case counts and maps, and the best ways to “Fight the Bite.”

Symptoms of dengue fever include fever, joint or muscle pain, headache or pain behind the eyes, and rash.

Those interested in obtaining general information about the current Big Island dengue fever investigation should call 2-1-1 and talk with Aloha United Way.

Anyone who thinks they may have contracted dengue fever on the Big Island should call 933-0912 if they are located in East Hawai‘i or 322-4877 in West Hawai‘i. If an individual is currently ill and concerned that they may have contracted dengue fever, they should contact their primary care physician.

Mosquito concerns should be reported to 974-6010 in East Hawai‘i or 322-1513 in West Hawai‘i.

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