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CDC warns visitors to beware of diseases in Bali

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Center for Disease Control (CDC, 疾管局) yesterday advised travelers intending to visit Bali to be mindful of the prevalence of rabies and dengue fever on the scenic Indonesian island.

The CDC warned visitors to stay alert for bites from animals such as cats and dogs, and to take measures to prevent contracting rabies and dengue fever.

According to Indonesian health officials, cases of rabies and dengue fever are on the rise in Bali. Throughout 2013, Bali recorded 5,870 instances of dengue fever infection, while rabies from animal bites numbered about 100 daily, Indonesian health officials said. In addition, about 1,682 cases of dengue fever were recorded last year in Denpasar, the capital city of Bali.

Overcrowding, poor sanitation and water quality in dense urban areas of Bali were named among the major contributor to the outbreak of diseases on the island, according to Indonesian health officials. With a population of 4.1 million, about 145 out of every 10,000 Bali citizens are expected to contract dengue fever, while the disease's soaring death count has come to represent 1 percent of the island's mortality rate.

In 2010 Bali saw a major outbreak of dengue fever, with 365 individuals out of 10,000 contracting the disease.

Cases of rabies from animal bites numbered at between 100 and 120 daily throughout the first six months of last year, claiming two lives in 2013.

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