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Mosquito Prevention and Eradication Stepped Up Due to the First Case of Japanese Encephalitis Being Reported in Pingtung (9th Case Nationwide)

  • Data Source:Ministry of Health and Welfare
  • Created:2014-07-10
  • Last Updated:2017-01-11

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported the first case of Japanese encephalitis in 2014 in Pingtung County. The patient is a 66-year-old female. Symptoms such as dizziness, lethargy and disorientation started on June 30 when the patient consulted a doctor and was hospitalized. The patient’s condition deteriorated on July 2, and she was transferred to the ICU. The case was confirmed after tests. The patient is now receiving treatment in the general ward. 
No overseas travel history was recorded for the case, and cohabiting family members had no suspected symptoms. The patient’s home is about 2 kilometers from a paddy field and about 500 meters from a pigeon loft. The Public Health Bureau of Pingtung County will carry out an environmental investigation, as well as take preventive and containment measures, including eliminating pathogenic mosquitoes with pest zappers. Health education regarding mosquito prevention among nearby citizens and vaccinations among children of the appropriate age will also be ramped up. 
A total of nine confirmed cases have been recorded to date in 2014, with 2 cases each in Changhua County, Chiayi City, and Tainan City, and 1 case each in Taichung City, Kaohsiung City, and Pingtung County. In all cases the patients are over the age of 40. The CDC stated that this is the peak season for the spread of Japanese encephalitis and that pathogenic mosquitoes’ blood-sucking activity peaks at dusk and dawn. Since pigs are the primary host for the virus’ propagation, citizens are advised to stay away from pig corrals, and other corrals, or paddy fields and irrigation ditches during the pathogenic mosquitoes’ blood-sucking peak hours. Moreover, they advise people to wear light-colored, long-sleeve clothes and pants and apply an MOHW-approved mosquito repellant on exposed parts of the body to avoid being bitten and infected if it is absolutely necessary to go to those areas. 
Infections of Japanese encephalitis are likely to result in serious neurological or psychological sequelae. Citizens are advised to take proper preventive measures, or go to MOHW-affiliated hospitals or branches to get self-paid vaccinations if they live or work near high-risk environments, such as pig corrals or paddy fields, or feel that they are at risk of infections. For the latest news on the epidemic situation and information about Japanese encephalitis, please visit the CDC website ( or call the domestic toll-free reporting and care hotline 1922 (or 0800-001922).