Chikungunya virus cases mount up

The health ministry is now calling the wave of chikungunya virus cases an outbreak.

The Ministerio de Salud confirmed Tuesday that there are 40 cases of the mosquito-born disease that are believed to have been contracted on foreign soil. But there also are seven that have been contracted in Costa Rica.

There is one each in Parrita, Costa de Pájaros, Chomes and Tamarindo. There are three in Manzanillo.

In addition there are 185 probable cases mainly around Abangares, the ministry said. There also are 1,962 cases of suspected dengue so far this year.

A high incidence of the dengue cases are in three cantons. They are Santa Cruz with 315, Nicoya with 155 and Carrillo with 90,  the ministry reported. All are in Guanacaste.

To counter the spread of these diseases, the ministry reported it was taking some steps, including canceling the vacations of some ministry workers who are involved in spraying and control. The ministry also called on municipalities to increase their efforts against the mosquitoes. The same mosquito species carries both diseases.

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