Preliminary Review of Risks for Community Dengue Fever Outbreaks - Using Kaohsiung City as an Example

Mei-Ju Chen1, Wen-Chieh Hsiao1, Wen-Yi Shih2,Yin-Feng Ko1, Szu-An Chen1,Yu-Ting Hou1,Chi-Chuan Huang1、Li-Jen Lin1

2011 Vol.27 NO.18

Correspondence Author: Mei-Ju Chen


In comparison with the distribution of types of Aedes mosquito in other counties/cities, Kaohsiung City has a higher ratio of Aedes aegypti than Aedes albopictus. Since the biological characteristics of Aedes aegypti and the high demographic density of Kaohsiung City, the outbreak of dengue fever has been in constant rotation or repeatedly occurring. To understand the risk factors of dengue fever outbreaks in the community, neighborhood magistrate visits were conducted in addition to ecological environment observations. The results showed several risk factors in the community, including old buildings, narrow alleyways, longer eaves that block sunlight, frequent interactions between residents, often under the eaves that may lead to a dengue outbreak. These factors are statistically significant if they hold a P value of 0.04 when paired with the factor of being located within 4 meters of the road. The demographic structure of the old communities has a higher age span with lower educational attainment and socioeconomic status; this limits access to personal hygiene education and increases the interactions between residents which result in the increasing of risk of a dengue fever outbreak. If a floral shop street is one of the characteristics of a community and residents are unable to distinguish potential breeding containers for mosquitoes, a dengue fever outbreak can easily occur. It is extremely important for community leaders to lead or take part in community activities; however, the work of an individual or a few residents can only aid in limited results of effective prevention of dengue fever. The fact that there is a shortage in help, the higher age of neighborhood magistrates, and the inability promote community awareness all are potential community health risks. Within the community, only those residents who identify with their community participate in maintaining their community’s environment for the well-being of themselves and the community. The measures need to be taken in prevention of dengue fever is to conduct community education for the residents to elevate awareness in maintaining hygienic environments not only at their own homes, but also within the community.