Fri. Oct 18th, 2019

Dengue outbreak could take a toll on our tourism

Tourists arrive at Palau Pacific Resort dock. (File Photo)

Dengue cases are rapidly rising as it affects the local community and spreads towards our tourist community.

Palau Visitors Authority (PVA) is alerting the tourism industry about the rising cases of dengue fever. The outbreak was first declared on December 7, 2018 and has continued to the present.

The data from Ministry of Health showed that there is quadruple increase of dengue cases, advising everyone to take precautionary measures. The best medical way to treat this is prevention. Everyone should be cleaning around their homes of any sitting containers, old tires and anything that is capable of collecting water and creating a nursing place for mosquitoes.

But it seems as though people don’t take this seriously until it affects them. It only matters when you are coming down with something and have to go to the hospital to be put on IV because your body temperature is dehydrating you and breaking down your system.

How did we let something as small as 2mm (0.1 in.) affect our lives? This small little critter can easily be killed with a slap of a hand and yet it has caused us death and illness? Now these tiny insects are making their way to ruin our economy affecting our tourism industry which is already declining as we speak. We should all be reminded that one of Palau’s main income is tourism which helps with money, providing jobs, and a knot in democratic relations.

One small step makes a big difference and we are less than four months into a new year. Let that sink in. Let us kill the problem before the year 2020 and do our part and take care of ourselves, each other and our home. (Kerdeu Uong)

Kerdeu Uong is an intern at the Island Times