Parliament Q&A

Written reply by Mr Masagos Zulkifli, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, to Parliamentary Question on Assistance to Home Owners on Dengue, on 8 Jul 2019

TOPICS: Dengue

Question from Mr Chong Kee Hiong: To ask the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources in view of the recent dengue situation, what assistance measures can be offered to home owners, especially the elderly, who are unable to check on areas beyond their reach such as gutters.

Reply by Minister Masagos Zulkifli: 
     As of 29 June, there were over 6,100 reported dengue cases in 2019, which is about four times the number of cases in the same period in 2018. We are entering the traditional peak dengue season and a national collective effort is critical to stem the transmission of dengue.

2.   Inspections conducted by the National Environment Agency (NEA) showed that 60% of all Aedes aegypti breeding habitats detected were in homes. This proportion was even higher in dengue clusters, with 74% of breeding habitats detected in homes. Therefore, home-owners play a crucial role in keeping dengue at bay.

3.   I urge all residents to take immediate action to eradicate potential mosquito breeding habitats by practicing the 5-step Mozzie Wipeout regularly, and stepping up housekeeping measures. All residents living in cluster areas should also cooperate with NEA officers to facilitate checks and carry out indoor misting in homes.

4.   Community support is an integral part of the national effort to raise awareness and drive action on the ground. NEA, together with Dengue Prevention Volunteers, works closely with Grassroots Advisers, Neighbourhood Committees (NCs) and Residents’ Committees (RCs) to reach out to residents. NCs and RCs can assist households with elderly members to check their homes and remove stagnant water to prevent mosquito breeding.

5.   Households can take preventive measures such as avoiding the use of flowerpot plates for ornamental plants. Home owners with roof gutters that are difficult to access can engage pest control operators to check for stagnant water and apply Bti insecticide, if they are unable to do so themselves. A typical Bti briquette can remain effective for about 30 days.

6.   NEA is stepping up efforts to stem dengue transmission. Over 440 dengue prevention events have been organised since the launch of this year’s National Dengue Prevention Campaign in April. However, the government alone cannot prevent dengue transmission in Singapore. I encourage everyone, including our silver generation, to be an advocate of dengue prevention and to remind our family members and neighbours to join in this national effort.

Filter / Show By Category