The monsoon has shown its adverse effect in Asian countries. Along with the destruction of life and property at a few places, the monsoon rains has also brought along a number of unwanted vector-borne diseases, caused due to mosquito bites. Given the temperature and environmental conditions, it becomes easy for mosquitoes to breed at this time of the year.
Keeping the increasing cases of mosquito-borne diseases in mind, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a issued the Level 1 travel advisory for chikungunya infection for the first time, warning against all non-essential travel to Myanmar, Maldives, Thailand and India. The travel alert was issued in the beginning of August for the countries where the virus was imported into Taiwan since July.
This came in at the same time when Taiwan issued its highest-level travel advisory. The three-tier system advisory came in for four Southeast and South Asian countries after a record high number of imported chikungunya fever cases were reported from those countries.
Back in July, Taiwan reported the first indigenous case of chikungunya fever in the country's history. The report came in after the samples of the chikungunya virus were found to contain sequences of the gene identical to those of the virus strain from Myanmar this year, according to the CDC.
In fact, by early August, Taiwan confirmed as many as 24 imported chikungunya cases for this year, a record high over the same period since 2007. These 24 imported cases include 12 from Myanmar, four from the Maldives, three from Thailand, two from Indonesia, one from Malaysia, one from the Philippines and one from India, according to the CDC.
The CDC also pointed out that both chikungunya fever and dengue fever are transmitted by the bites of infected Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. While the diseases are not fatal, they can be life-threating if detected later in the infected stage.