"Dengue Warriors" in Singapore
Dengue fever is the world’s fastest spreading, mosquito-borne viral disease, affecting an estimated 390 million people yearly. Spread predominantly by day-feeding mosquitoes, it causes severe flu-like symptoms and a potentially lethal form called severe dengue can also develop. There is no specific treatment, and prevention depends solely on effective mosquito control measures.
Dengue fever flourishes in urban poor areas, suburbs and the countryside but also affects more affluent neighborhoods in tropical and subtropical countries. Each year, 500,000 people with severe dengue require hospitalization and the World Health Organization estimates that 50% of the world’s population is now at risk. The economic and social costs of dengue can severely impact families, businesses and communities.
Following a dramatic surge in dengue cases in Singapore, BASF is working actively with government agencies and industry representatives to help combat the disease with integrated mosquito management programs. This is especially critical for urban development areas and construction sites where pools of standing water are notorious breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
At a recent “Dengue Warrior” seminar organized by BASF and pest control supplier Bentz Jaz in Singapore, over 600 pest management professionals, contractors, builders and environmental health & safety managers learned about the importance of integrated mosquito control programs.
The Dengue Warrior seminar was developed in conjunction with the National Environment Agency in Singapore and promotes a more efficient approach to mosquito control than traditional methods such as the use of anti-malaria oils. The participants learnt about mosquito biology, breeding cycles and habitats as well as preventative measures, integrated monitoring and treatment programs.
Bentz Jaz presented a new mosquito monitoring trap (GraviTrap) and the instant reporting system app (GraviTreks) to the audience. BASF demonstrated how to control mosquito larvae safely and effectively before they hatch with Abate® larvicide.Commenting on the success of the Dengue Warrior seminar, Allen Heng, general manager, Bentz Jaz Singapore Pte Ltd said "We were very happy with the high turnout. The seminar was very well received and it is still the 'talk of the town'. All the participants remember their pledge to fight dengue fever. But the fight will need long term, continuous efforts and we are pleased that the seminar has made a valuable first step. Public and construction companies are now more aware of the actions they can take to prevent and destroy mosquito breeding grounds, and are approaching us for support in solving their mosquito issues".
William Tan, operations director of pest control firm, Killem Pest Pte Ltd and a guest at the seminar said, "It was a very informative session and the topics covered definitely created more awareness of the issues. It was good to interact with industry experts and authorities to discuss solutions and ideas to combat dengue in Singapore".