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Dengue fever under control, Hawaii is “open for business”

HONOLULU – Hawaii has reached a turning point in its fight against dengue fever. Following an outbreak that prompted a state of emergency by the County of Hawaii for Hawaii Island on Feb. 8, Hawaii officials are now celebrating a “milestone’ occasion – the passing of 30 days since the last known infected person was contagious.

“As we celebrate this milestone today, I think it’s critical that everyone understand this is not the end,” said Virginia Pressler, director of the state Department of Health.

Hawaii Tourism Authority CEO George Szigeti said the timing of the announcement came at the right time, just before the state’s peak tourism season.

“We are open for business,” he said. “Travellers can book Hawaii with confidence and without hesitation.”

According to the Associated Press, state and county crews are continuing to perform mosquito surveillance and cleanups. They recently worked with a Big Island property owner to remove more than 1,000 tires (breeding grounds for mosquitos).

A total of 263 confirmed dengue fever cases in Hawaii have been reported since last September.