Eliminate Dengue Project (EDP) Yogyakarta team has withdrawn as many as 8,000 buckets containing the eggs of Aedes aegypti mosquito with Wolbachia bacteria from areas in Yogyakarta. This was done because the percentage of the mosquito population had reached 80 percent.
”We estimate that the population of mosquito carrying wolbachia bacteria has reached as high as 80 percent, so last week we withdrew all the buckets from the areas,” said main researcher from the EDP, Prof. Adi Utarini, to journalists on Wednesday (13/12) in the EDP office at Sekip N-14 Kampus UGM.
Adi Utarini said the 12 areas that had been assigned with the buckets comprised public space, homes, hotels, schools, and offices.
“There are 12 clusters where we put the buckets in people’s homes, schools, factories, and even graveyards, all spread in the city and one community health centre in Bantul,” she said.
Despite the withdrawal, but the development of the mosquito population will continue to be observed, including to monitor the number of dengue fever cases if someone is contracting it. “Our hypothesis was that dengue fever cases in areas that are not spread out with the mosquito will be twice higher than those being treated,” said dr. Riris Andono Ahmad., MPH., Ph.D.
Currently, the EDP has recruited 100 health cadres who are assigned to 18 health centres to monitor patients that are indicated with the disease. Patients that have high fever on the second day and come to the community health centres will be monitored to know the history of their disease. “We want to make sure if they have gone to the non-wolbachia areas or not,” she added.
She said until end of 2019, EDP targets to record as many as 10,000 patients of high fever to serve as data to affirm the impact of the research into the spread of mosquito carrying the wolbachia. “We need samples as high as 10,000 patients for the next two years. We want to prove that Wolbachia can really resolve dengue fever,” she said.