Guatemala declares health emergency due to dengue epidemic

Photo of author

By LatAm Reports Editor

Guatemala’s Ministry of Public Health and Social Welfare declared the national health emergency in the face of the dengue epidemic .

President of Guatemala seeks alternatives to remove Attorney General

The measure was published on Tuesday, April 30 in the Official Journal, through the ministerial agreement 152-2024, which was signed by the acting minister, Sandra Aparicio Sical.

According to Article 1 of the above-mentioned ministerial agreement, it was indicated that dengue is transmitted by the vector Aedes aegypti, which “affects all age and sex groups.”

It was also detailed that in order to maintain actions for the promotion, prevention and crisis management, centralized and decentralized public entities, as well as autonomous and semi-autonomous, municipal, private, non-governmental and community organizations, should coordinate with the Ministry of Health.

Through a press release, the Sanitary portfolio indicated that “this alert emphasizes that the institutions that make up the health sector must carry out, according to their competence, epidemiological surveillance, outbreak research, entomological surveillance for the implementation of integrated vector management strategies (mosquito) Aedes aegypti.”

Health authorities confirmed that nine people have died so far this year from this disease and already record about 15,000 cases due to the dengue epidemic.

The ministry reported that in at least 12 departments cases have been fivefold compared to 2023 records, in the same period.

Dengue cases in Guatemala exceeded 60,000 in 2023, in an unstoppable rise since August of that year, when three months of health emergency were decreed.

In one of its first valuations, the portfolio estimated that this annual period would end with a 152 percent rise compared to the 2022 scenario.

Health authorities say they are carrying out fumigation days to eliminate adult mosquitoes, but that the population’s collaboration in the elimination of breeding grounds on the eve of the next start of the rainy season is key to controlling the figures.