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China reports over 27,000 dengue fever cases

October 09, 2014, 12:16 UTC+3 BEIJING

This year's dengue fever outbreak in the south of China was caused by unusually high temperature and humid weather which sparked the mosquito population

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Medical treatment in chinese hospital (archive)

Medical treatment in chinese hospital (archive)

© AP Photo/Xinhua, Li Ran

BEIJING, October 9. /TASS/. An outbreak of mosquito-borne dengue fever in China has killed six people and infected more than 27,200, a Chinese health authority spokeswoman said on Thursday.

Song Shuli, spokeswoman of the National Health and Family Planning Commission, said that this year witnessed an apparent increase of dengue cases with most of them found in China's southern regions, including Guangdong, Fujian, Yunnan and Guangxi.

Unusually high temperatures and humid weather have contributed to a mosquito population in South China five times as high as normal, fuelling the outbreak, health officials said.

Spread by mosquitoes, the disease thrives in tropical mega cities thanks to rapid urbanization and population movement. Climate change is also a factor, giving rise to longer periods that infected mosquitos can survive.

The potentially fatal disease causes high fever and severe joint pain. It affects from 50 million to 100 million people in tropical and subtropical regions every year, estimates the World Health Organization.

Apart from China, dengue fever cases have been reported in Malaysia Japan and Venezuela.

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