Hawaii News

Travel-related dengue virus case reported on Kaua‘i

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The Hawai‘i Department of Health has reported two separate travel-related dengue virus cases, one on Kauaʻi and one on Maui.

The affected individuals traveled to a region where dengue is known to be spread. DOH teams were deployed for inspection and mosquito control in the affected areas.

The DOH is asking the Hawai‘i community to help reduce the risk for any local transmission by exercising the best practices described below.

This is the first dengue case on Kauaʻi for 2024 and the second case of dengue on Maui for 2024. This year there have been eight travel-related dengue cases identified in the state (one on Kauaʻi, two on Maui and five on Oʻahu). Exposure for these cases originated among various locations worldwide. Multiple regions around the world are currently experiencing higher-than-normal dengue activity.


Symptoms of dengue typically may be mild or severe and include fever, nausea, vomiting, rash and body aches. Symptoms typically last two to seven days and although severe and even life-threatening illness can occur, most people recover after about a week. If you have traveled recently and are experiencing these symptoms, contact your health care provider.

Dengue virus is spread from infected person to mosquito to person. While Hawai‘i is home to the type of mosquitoes that can carry dengue, the disease is not endemic, or established, here in the state and cases are currently only seen in travelers.

Dengue outbreaks do occur in many parts of the world including Central and South America, Asia (including the Republic of the Philippines), the Middle East, Africa, and some Pacific Islands, including the U.S. territories of American Samoa, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Marshall Islands, the Republic of Palau and many popular tourist destinations in the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico.


Anyone who plans to travel or have traveled to an area with dengue is at risk for infection. Currently, the Centers for Disease Control advises travelers to practice usual precautions when traveling to areas of dengue risk. This includes using an Environmental Protection Agency-registered insect repellent, wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outdoors, and sleeping in a room with window screens, air conditioning or an insecticide-treated bed net.

Some countries are reporting increased numbers of cases, so it is important four to six weeks before you travel to review country-specific travel information for the most up-to-date guidance on dengue risk and prevention measures for that country. Travelers returning from an area with risk of dengue should take steps to prevent mosquito bites for three weeks, and if symptoms of dengue develop within two weeks upon return, should seek medical evaluation.

In areas of suspected or confirmed dengue, Hawai‘i DOH personnel with the Vector Control Branch conduct inspections and mosquito-reducing activities. Reducing mosquito populations reduces the chances of dengue being transmitted to other people.


In areas without reported dengue cases, eliminating mosquito-breeding sites in and around your home is a good practice. Mosquitoes only need small amounts of standing water to breed. Common breeding sites at home include:

  • Buckets
  • Water-catching plants (such as Bromeliads)
  • Small containers
  • Planters
  • Rain barrels
  • Cups left outside

Simply pouring out containers of standing water eliminates the potential for mosquito breeding.

Finally, no matter where you live, if the area is prone to mosquitoes, wear long sleeves and long pants and or use approved EPA-registered repellents, especially at dusk and dawn to reduce your chances of mosquito bites. 

For more information, visit the Disease Outbreak Control Division website and Vector Control Branch website.


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