Bangkok – June 9, 2023 – Dr. Opas Karnkawinpong, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Public Health, presided over the opening ceremony of ASEAN Dengue Day 2023 at The Halls in Bangkok.
The event’s theme, "Moving Forward to Zero Dengue Death" was joined by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) featuring a collaboration of nine partners: Kao Industrial (Thailand) Co., Ltd.; Takeda (Thailand) Co., Ltd.; the Embassy of Japan in Thailand; CP ALL Public Company Limited; the National Electronics and Computer Technology Center (NECTEC NSTDA); the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand; Amata Corporation Public Company Limited; the Dengue-Zero MOU; and Advanced Info Company Service PCL. This united front of the government and private sectors shows a determined response to combat the lethal consequences of dengue fever, in response to what could be the worst outbreak in the last three years. Additionally, prizes totaling 100,000 baht were awarded to the winners of the inaugural "ASEAN Dengue Day Contest 2023," a creative and pioneering media contest aimed at raising awareness among the Thai population for the first time about the imminent and alarming threat of dengue fever.
Dr. Opas Karnkawinpong, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Public Health, said, "Dengue fever, an endemic disease, is a significant public health concern in both Thailand and ASEAN. From January to May 2023, Thailand reported a total of 18,173 cases and 15 deaths. This represents a 4.2-fold increase compared to the previous year, marking the highest outbreak in three years. Thailand is currently averaging 900 dengue patients and one death per week. The highest incidence rates have been observed in Bangkok and the Southern and Central Regions, with the most affected population being students aged 5-14 years, followed by those aged 15-24 years. To address this situation, the Department of Disease Control is rolling out three strategies to combat dengue fever. Our objectives are to: 1) Rebrand our disease prevention campaign and present government agencies as more proactive entities; 2) Rethink our approach to changing the mindsets of Thais, raising awareness about the dangers of dengue fever and emphasizing the importance of self-care; and 3) Reconnect the strong partnership between the government and private sector to advance innovation and collaboration in our efforts to prevent dengue fever-related fatalities."
Mr. Suksan Kittisupakorn, Deputy Permanent Secretary of Bangkok, commented, "Given that Bangkok is among the provinces with the highest incidence of dengue fever, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has implemented policies and proactive measures focused on disease prevention and early detection, particularly in community areas, schools, and places of worship. We are also cooperating with both the public and private sectors to increase public awareness about the risks associated with dengue fever. Our aim is to ensure that Bangkok remains a safe, disease-free city, free from the threat of dengue fever."
Mr. Yuji Shimizu, President of Kao Industrial (Thailand) Co., Ltd., said, "Committed to safeguarding people’s lives from dengue fever, Kao has supported NECTEC NSTDA and the Department of Disease Control in the development of the 'RooTan' application enabling health-related risks alerts since 2021. We are also collaborating on the development of technology to change people's behavior in preventing dengue fever through an innovative forecasting model that predicts the likelihood of disease outbreaks, aiming to find ways to protect people from dengue fever in the future. Additionally, Kao continues to spearhead the ‘GUARD OUR FUTURE’ project, focusing primarily on school children who are at high risk of contracting dengue fever. We are committed to educating students and parents in over 160 schools across Bangkok and provincials about dengue fever and its proper preventive methods. We have also engaged Paper Planes, a popular artist among children, to compose songs and produce music videos that highlight the risks of dengue fever to Thai children and youth."
Mr. Peter Streibl, General Manager of Takeda (Thailand) Limited, said, "Dengue fever imposes
a significant burden on individuals and the Thai public health system. Alongside raising awareness, immunization for oneself and families is another pathway towards achieving zero-dengue in Thailand.
We recognize the value of immunization which can save countless lives from dengue. Our focus lies in dengue prevention and control efforts in schools and communities, raising awareness through impactful initiatives including "Ing-Ma", Dengue Virtual Human Campaign and www.knowdengueth.com. Enabling the public to access to all information relating to dengue, anytime, anywhere via innovative communication channels."
Kao Industrial (Thailand) Co., Ltd.
O-NES Tower, 14th floor, 6, Soi Sukhumvit 6, Klongtoey Sub-District,
Klongtoey District, Bangkok 10110
Contact person: Corporate Communications