Chikungunya strikes 17 workers, Indians included

August 7th, 2008 - 3:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Singapore, Aug 7 (DPA) The mosquito-borne chikungunya disease has hit 17 workers in the largest outbreak of the viral infection in the city state, the Singapore health ministry data said Friday. The patients, all living in the Kranji Way area, include seven Indian nationals, three Bangladeshis, two Thais, two Malaysians and two Singaporeans.

Fifteen of them worked in a single company making building materials, The Straits Times said. The other two were employed in a nearby storage yard.

They bring the total number of Kranji Way victims to 20, the ministry said. Patients have been taken to the Communicable Disease Centre.

The afflicted were found with the dengue-like disease when health officers screened 282 workers after three became ill last month, the report said.

Previously, the largest chikungunya outbreak hit 13 people in January in the city-state’s Little India area, which was Singapore’s first outbreak of the disease.

Symptoms include fever and joint pain. There is no vaccine to prevent the disease.

During inspections of 23 premises in Kranji Way, the National Environment Agency’s officers found 15 where chikungunya mosquitos were breeding in standing water.

So far this year, 39 people have contracted chikungunya in Singapore, the report said. Another 35 were infected while in other countries.

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