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Sonora invests in dengue prevention after cases skyrocketed in the state in 2022

Sonora officials are kicking off efforts to prevent dengue outbreaks this year after seeing a major jumpin cases in 2022.

Last year, Sonora became the Mexican state most impacted by the mosquito-borne dengue virus with a significant spike in cases, particularly in the southern part of the state. Officials reported more than 2,200 confirmed cases, compared to just over 100 in 2021 and only 2 the year prior.

Now, Gov. Alfonso Durazo said his government has invested some $3 million in vehicles, uniforms and supplies for a new dengue fighting crew within the state health ministry.

The 230-person itinerant group was formed to improve the efficacy of Sonora’s dengue prevention measures, he said.

The unit will travel the state carrying out cleaning and fumigation projects. They will also educate people living in affected areas about how to avoid attracting mosquitos to their homes and patios, and encourage them to seek out medical attention if they have symptoms — which can include headache, rash and aches and pain

Kendal Blust, an Arizona native, reports from KJZZ’s bureau in Hermosillo, Sonora, focusing on business and economic relationships between Arizona and northern Mexico.Prior to joining KJZZ, Kendal worked at the Nogales International, reporting on border and immigration issues, local government, education and business. While working on her master’s degree at University of Arizona School of Journalism, she did stints with the Arizona Daily Star and the Tico Times in Costa Rica, and completed a thesis project about women art activists in the Arizona-Sonora borderlands.In her pre-journalist life, Kendal was a teacher, first helping Spanish high school students learn English, then heading to Tucson to teach fourth grade.When she’s not in the newsroom, Kendal enjoys getting outside for a hike or a swim, catching a good movie, hanging out with family and friends, and eating great food.