Wednesday, December 6

35,370 animal bite cases reported in Sarawak since 2017, dengue cases on the rise


A dog bares its fangs in this Reuters file photo. A total of 35,370 cases of animal bites have been recorded in Sarawak since 2017.

KUCHING: A total of 35,370 cases of animal bites have been reported to Sarawak State Health Department since July 1, 2017, the august House was told.

Minister of Housing and Local Government Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian said of this number, 11,968 high risk cases have received vaccinations.

“So far, a total of 22 human rabies cases were recorded while as of Nov 8, all Divisions are affected by the rabies outbreak, except Limbang,” he said.

Dr Sim said Sarawak currently ranked nine out of the 13 states in the country in terms of dengue cases.

He said as of Oct 19, some 1,921 dengue cases were reported in Sarawak compared to 520 cases over the same period in 2018 – an increase of 269.4%.

He said Sarawak State Health Department would continue to work closely with other non-health agencies in Sarawak to further reduce and prevent dengue cases in Sarawak.

He said since 2010, the highest cause of death in Sarawak due to infectious diseases was tuberculosis (TB).

“It is also the second highest most common notifiable disease in the State. In the past decade, there was a sudden surge of TB cases reported in Sarawak.

“Last year, 3,122 cases were reported. This year, as of Oct 19, a total of 2,476 tuberculosis cases were reported,” he said.

He said the Sarawak State Health Department is taking steps to detect as many cases as possible through systematic screening and to start early treatment in order to halt and control the spread of the disease.

He noted that the Department had also formulated a plan of action for the Tuberculosis Control Programme for 2019-2021 to ensure all control activities are systematically carried out and to detect more cases various levels of services, including community involvement.

The target is to streamline TB control activities with the aim to end the TB epidemic by 2030 as stated by the World Health Organisation.