Dengue is a serious disease caused by a bite from an infected mosquito. With many popular surf spots in overseas endemic Dengue areas, we generally have a few cases brought back every year. On Maui aggressive steps, under Public Health officer Dr. Lorrin Pang, to prevent Dengue from taking hold in our local mosquitoes has isolated these cases and prevented a recurrence of the 2001 situation where East Maui mosquitoes became infected with Dengue.
Prior to that, the last known Autochthonous (caused by our mosquitoes rather than contracted overseas) dengue infections in Hawaii were in 1944. Allowing dengue to get a toe hold in our home-grown mosquitoes, would be a disaster. For instance the island of Bali has yearly outbreaks which fill their hospitals to 100% occupancy.
But now dengue has taken hold on Big Island.