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Dengue Fever in Singapore Likely to Increase: Minister

Dengue fever cases in Singapore, which is currently battling an outbreak, are expected to increase in the months ahead as temperatures soar, the city-state's environment minister said Monday .

Yaacob Ibrahim, who is also the minister for water resources, told parliament there were 3,597 dengue fever cases in the first-half of 2007, more than double the 1,574 cases reported in the same period last year.

He said "cases are expected to continue to rise in the warmer months ahead" and urged Singaporeans to make a daily check of their homes for potential breeding spots.

"I would like to stress that our fight against dengue must be underpinned by collective efforts and commitment of all in our community," said Yaacob.

"Breeding in homes continues to pose a challenge," he said, adding these were caused mainly by domestic containers, flower pot plates and ornamental containers placed inside and outside homes.

Singapore experienced its worst dengue outbreak in 2005 when 19 people died and more than 13,000 were infected.

The city-state has launched a massive publicity campaign to educate residents.

It has also stepped up efforts to eradicate mosquito breeding grounds in the city which has a reputation as one of Asia's cleanest.

Dengue -- a flu-like viral disease spread by the bite of infected mosquitoes -- is traditionally associated with poorer tropical countries.

Infection leads to a sudden onset of fever with severe headaches, muscle and joint pains, and rashes.


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