Use of a computer model to identify potential hotspots for dengue fever in New Zealand

N. De Wet, W. Ye, S. Hales, R. Warrick, A. Woodward, Philip Weinstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Citations (Scopus)


Aims. To describe the areas of potential dengue fever risk in New Zealand for present climatic conditions and projected scenarios of climate change.Methods. A computer model, the HOTSPOTS System, was developed. This allowed the integration of climatic, topographical, entomological, demographic, trade and travel data to generate spatial information describing vector introduction risk, potential vector distribution and dengue fever risk.Results. Under present climatic conditions, Auckland and Northland, and some coastal areas of other northern parts of the North Island, have a potential risk for dengue outbreaks supported by the vector Aedes albopictus. Greenhouse gas induced climate change could make these areas also receptive to Aedes aegpti-the more efficient tropical dengue vector-and increase the potential distribution of A. albopictus to much of the South Island.Conclusions. Given the introduction of a competent vector, there is an appreciable risk of dengue fever occurring in New Zealand under present climatic conditions. Greenhouse gas induced climate change would substantially increase the magnitude and spatial extent of this risk.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)420-422
JournalNew Zealand Medical Journal
Publication statusPublished - 2001

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