Brazil: Chikungunya cases increased by about 97% compared to last year; dengue had an increase of 43.8%
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To monitor the increase in cases of dengue, chikungunya and Zika in the country, the Ministry of Health has established the Center for Emergency Operations (COE Arboviroses), with the aim of developing strategies to control and reduce serious cases and deaths. The alert comes due to the increase in records of these diseases, such as cases of dengue fever, which grew by 43.8% until March of this year, compared to the same period last year. Chikungunya notifications increased by 97%.
We limited growth in some states, which keeps us vigilant. We are already sending field teams to make a diagnosis of the situation in these areas and will be strengthening the surveillance of the arbovirus scenario across the country. Our priority is to raise awareness among the population, so that we can control the spread of these diseases, said Alda Maria da Cruz, director of the Department of Communicable Diseases at the Ministry of Health.
With the activation of the COE, officials will monitor the situation, focusing on dengue and chikungunya, directing the implementation of measures aimed at epidemiological and laboratory surveillance, assistance and vector control. Coordinated action and response planning will be carried out jointly with states and municipalities.
In 2022, between January and early March, 209,900 probable cases of dengue fever were reported. In 2023, the number jumped to 301,800, in the same time period, with a rate of 141.5 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. As for severe cases, 2,900 cases were registered among all notifications. This figure has decreased compared to the same period last year – about 3,800 registrations. So far this year, there have been 73 reported deaths from the disease. Another 64 are still under investigation. In the same period last year, the total number of confirmed deaths was 172.
The region that recorded the highest incidence of dengue fever in 2023 is the Midwest, with 254.3 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by the southeast at a rate of 214.7 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, then the south at a rate of 98.2 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. Espírito Santo was the state with the highest increase in infection rates, with 921.7 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Mato Grosso do Sul with 432.5 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, and Minas Gerais, with 392.1 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
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In 2023, also between January and early March, there were 43,000 probable cases of chikungunya, an increase of 97.1% compared to the same period in 2022. One death has been confirmed this year in Espiritu Santo and 13 more are under investigation. Last year, in the same period, 14 deaths were confirmed.
The region that recorded the highest incidence of the disease in 2023 is the southeast, with a rate of 34.3 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by the northeastern region, with a rate of 13.8 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, then the north, with a rate of 13.1 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. population. Tocantins recorded the highest infection rate, with 139.2 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Minas Gerais, with a rate of 129.0 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, then Espírito Santo, with a rate of 51.6 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.