The number of reported cases of dengue fever in south China's Guangdong Province has risen to 247, said the provincial health department on Tuesday.
The cases include 218 in Guangzhou, the provincial capital, 20 in Yangjiang, six in Foshan and one in Zhuhai, Shenzhen and Chaozhou, respectively, said the department, warning that the number is likely to rise.
One hundred and thirty six people have recovered but 111 are still receiving treatment in hospital, the department said.
No deaths have been reported, it said.
When dengue fever broke out in Guangdong in 2002, over 1,000 people were infected.
People shouldn't panic over dengue fever, as the disease is transmitted by mosquitoes only, without inter-personal transmission. Most of the patients could recover in a week, said Tang Xiaoping, head of the Guangzhou Hospital of Infectious Disease.
The local health authorities have called on local residents to clean up the environment to eradicate mosquitoes as there are no effective vaccines to prevent the disease.
Dengue is a serious infectious disease that causes high fever and can lead to vomiting and nausea. It kills 25,000 people and infects more than 100 million each year in tropical and subtropical regions of the world, according to China's Ministry of Health.
The ministry has announced a nationwide monitoring of dengue fever and will gather details of outbreaks so the disease can be more quickly detected.
(Xinhua News Agency September 6, 2006)