This blog is intended to go along with Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, by John R. Weeks, published by Cengage Learning. The latest edition is the 12th (it came out in 2015), but this blog is meant to complement any edition of the book by showing the way in which demographic issues are regularly in the news.

If you are a user of my textbook and would like to suggest a blog post idea, please email me at: john.weeks@sdsu.edu

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Dengue Fever Lurks in Florida

Back in 1935, Hans Zinsser reminded us that diseases are constantly lurking, waiting to take advantage of a moment when we let our guard down. I thought of this when reading reports of recently diagnosed cases of Dengue Fever in Key West, Florida. The island has a population not only of humans, but also of Aedes aegypti mosquitos, which are the vectors that spread the virus among humans. Thus it only would have taken one infected person, or the arrival on a plane of one infected mosquito, to spread the disease. A colleague of mine, Dr. Arthur Getis, has been studying the spatial demography of Dengue Fever for a long time and has published many articles on the topic, including an analysis in another Florida (this one in Puerto Rico), where the recommendation was that control measures needed to include the entire municipality, not just the places where known cases had been identified.

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