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Malaysia Alerts for Dengue, Cholera in Flooded Area
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The Malaysian health authorities are on high alert for the outbreak of diseases, especially dengue and cholera, in the flood-hit Johor state, local media reported Saturday.


In Segamat, one of the districts worst hit by floods in the southernmost state of Johor, three cholera cases had been detected in a relief center over the last five days, Segamat district senior health officer Zaharah Mohd Salleh said Saturday.


She said interviews with the cholera victims showed that they contracted the disease after consuming untreated water.


"We are also testing blood samples taken from flood victims at the relief center to ensure that they are disease free. We advise anyone who has fever to immediately seek treatment from nearby clinics," Zaharah was quoted as saying by the national news agency Bernama.


Meanwhile, the district health department had formed 60 teams to ensure there is no dengue outbreak after the flood waters recede.


"During the floods dengue-carrying mosquitoes could have laid their eggs and after the waters recede, these eggs could hatch," the health officer warned.


Zaharah said local councils have been instructed to start fumigation exercise after the flood waters recede.


"We want to put all necessary precautions in place to ensure there is no outbreak of diseases during and after the floods," she added.


(Xinhua News Agency December 25, 2006)



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