Health officials in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro have confirmed a case of type 4 dengue fever, which has not been seen in the area since 2018, Agencia Brasil reported. In response, measures are being considered to control the spread of the mosquitoes that transmit the disease (Aedes aegypti). More than 6,000 dengue virus cases have been identified this year, with 5,532 type 1 cases, 820 type 2 cases, and only one type 4 case.
Although mosquito control actions are carried out year-round, they need to be intensified in the summer months when the number of victims tends to increase, it was also explained after the latest detection at the Noel Nutels Central Public Health Laboratory.
Over 10 million properties have been visited to prevent and control the vector while 2,018,614 containers that could serve as mosquito breeding grounds have been treated or eliminated.
The dengue virus is transmitted mainly through the bite of infected Aedes aegypti females. Mosquito control is the main method for preventing and controlling dengue and other urban arboviruses, such as chikungunya and Zika. Hence the importance of eliminating breeding sites and keeping water reservoirs covered. Aedes aegypti attacks mainly during the day.
The main symptoms of dengue are high fever; body and joint pain; pain behind the eyes; malaise; lack of appetite; headache and red spots on the body.
Meanwhile, federal health officials are stepping up vaccination against Covid-19 after the new subvariants JN.1 and JG.3 have been identified in the South American country.
“At this time, it is important that all Brazilians keep up to date with the vaccination scheme with all the doses recommended for each age group, including the bivalent booster,” the ministry stated. “All the vaccines currently available under SUS [Brazil’s national network of public health care services] are effective against the variants circulating in the country, preventing serious symptoms and deaths,” the Health Ministry said in a statement which also confirmed that the antiviral nirmatrelvir / ritonavir was available under SUS for patients aged 65 and over and immunosuppressed people aged 18 and over, as soon as symptoms appear and there is confirmation of a positive test.
The JN.1 subvariant has been gaining global proportions and now accounts for 3.2 percent of cases worldwide, the ministry reported. The JG.3 subvariant is being monitored in the states of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and Goiás. Both subvariants have been found in 47 countries, as per a report by the World Health Organization.
“The Ministry of Health remains aligned with all the scientific evidence, with the most up-to-date recommendations of the World Health Organization for tackling Covid-19, including planning for vaccination in 2024, which is underway,” the document went on.
“The acquisition of vaccines for next year’s calendar is underway. The new contract stipulates the supply of the most up-to-date versions of the vaccines, provided they have been approved by the National Health Surveillance Agency” (Anvisa), the communiqué added.