Global Alert and Response (GAR)

Dengue fever in Cape Verde

As of 28 October 2009, the Ministry of Health has reported 3 367 suspected cases of viral diseases of unknown etiology in 4 islands: Brava, Fogo, Maio, and Santiago.

The first samples tested, have been laboratory confirmed as dengue virus serotype 3 by the Institute Pasteur Dakar, the WHO Collaborating Centre for Arbovirus and Viral Haemorrhagic Fevers (VHF) and Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN) partner.

This is the first reported epidemic of Dengue fever in Cape Verde.

It is important to highlight that an ongoing outbreak of Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus has been circulating in the country since June 2009.

The Government has established a ministerial committee of vector control lead by the Prime Minister including all ministries involved in containing the outbreak. The measures taken include clinical management, vector control, and social mobilization. A rapid surveillance and reporting system through SMS messaging systems has been established by the MoH and the public IT agency with WHO collaboration.

On 26 October a team from the WHO Regional Office for Africa, Intercountry Support Team and the Institute Pasteur Dakar arrived to support Cape Verde in investigating the outbreak. The team will provide laboratory, entomology and epidemiology support and set up laboratory diagnostics at the Hospital Agostinho Neto. The team will further initiate vector control activities and the recording and analysis of epidemiological trends. The Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN) will provide additional assistance to health authorities in Cape Verde.

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