Phuket City Municipality has designated four city temples as “pilot areas” in the battle to stop the spread of dengue fever.
Phuket Town Mayor Somjai Suwansupapana told the state-run MCOT news agency there have been 693 confirmed cases of dengue in the city so far this year.
The number of new cases being reported is on the rise. Monsoon season rainfall, flooding and blocked drains create pools of stagnant water where mosquitoes that vector the disease can breed, she said.
To combat the spread of dengue, four temples have been designated as model areas with strict mosquito control measures in force at all times.
The four temples are Wat Saensuk, Wat Kajonrangsan, Wat Puttamongkol-nimit and Wat Wichitsangkaram.
The temples will also serve as centers where public health workers will inform monks and people in the surrounding community about the steps they can take to eradicate mosquito larvae in and around their homes.
The sessions will be held three times a month.
The temples will also serve as a staging area for pesticide fumigation in risk areas, which is also scheduled to take place three times per month.
Health workers will collect mosquito specimens in each area for analysis to determine if they are resistant to pesticides. The analysis will help them determine which pesticides to use in future fumigations.
Wat Saensuk, in the lower east side of Phuket Town near Robinsons department store, has been designated as the command center where all data about the project will be kept.
The Gazette reminds people taking part in Loy Kratong activities tonight to protect themselves from mosquito bites by wearing long-sleeved clothing and mosquito repellent.