215 Dengue Cases Confirmed in Florida
As the summer of 2023 comes to a close in sunny Florida, its dengue outbreak shows no signs of fading before New Year's Eve.
The Florida Health Department reported during week #32, there were 15 new dengue cases confirmed.
As of August 12, 2023, Florida's southern counties have reported most of the 204 travel-associated dengue cases and eleven locally acquired dengue cases this year.
Recently, two locally acquired dengue cases were confirmed in Broward County.
To notify residents and visitors of this mosquito-spreading disease, Broward County joined Miami-Dade County by issuing a mosquito-borne Illness Alert, which is scheduled to end on December 31, 2023.
The good news is this year's outbreak is less than in 2022, when 903 travel-associated and 68 locally-acquired dengue cases were reported.
Florida is not the only U.S. vacation area at risk for dengue.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says dengue is endemic in Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau.
Puerto Rico's Department of Health Arboviral Disease reported 929 confirmed dengue cases and three related fatalities in 2022.
According to recent research, dengue outbreaks will continue to be reported in new areas.
And a study published by the Royal Society indicates that dengue-carrying mosquitoes are expanding their range by an average of 6.5 meters of elevation and have moved polewards by 4.7 km annually.
The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) says dengue is an illness that affects infants, young children, and adults, with symptoms ranging from mild fever to incapacitating high fever, severe headache, pain behind the eyes, muscle and joint pain, and rash.
The illness can evolve into severe dengue, characterized by shock, respiratory distress, severe bleeding, and/or serious organ impairment.
About 500 million people in the Americas, including Costa Rica and Cancun, are at risk of dengue in 2023.
Dengue is a vaccine-preventable disease in 2023, says the PAHO.
Since October 30, 2022, two dengue vaccines have been authorized in various countries. New market research forecasts an 11.7% annual growth rate through 2030, indicating dengue vaccines could become a $1.2 billion market segment.
As of August 21, 2023, dengue vaccine access requires pre-admission diagnostic tests.
Note: In addition to dengue, seven locally acquired malaria cases have been reported in Florida this year. Malaria is also a mosquito-transmitted disease.