MORE than 60 volunteers of the Fiji Red Cross will be dispatched to communities across the Western Division today.
The society's resource development manager, Dianne Masih-Reddy, said since the announcement by the Health Ministry that infected dengue fever numbers had exceeded 10,000 and 11 deaths had been reported, the immediate deployment of volunteers was necessary.
"We are here in an auxiliary role to assist the Health Ministry reach out to as many people as possible and as quickly as possible," she said.
"Our volunteers are basically going out to inform communities on what the symptoms of dengue are.
"What we have found is that people are waiting until the last minute before presenting themselves at the hospital.
"So, we are advocating for people to take themselves to the nearest health centre at the onset of dengue-like symptoms."
Mrs Masih-Reddy said Red Cross volunteers were also disseminating information on how dengue was spread and the importance of keeping immediate surroundings clean and clear of water-holding containers.
The Fiji Red Cross conducted the training of 15 volunteers in Lautoka yesterday in preparation for today's deployment.
Teams will be deployed to Sigatoka, Nadi, Lautoka, Ba, Tavua and Rakiraki.