Health Ministry says a total of 730 snake bite cases have been reported between January and April 26. Pix by WAN NUR SYAHIRAH WAN ABDULLAH.

PUTRAJAYA: A total 730 cases of snake bites with one death in Kelantan have been reported to the Health Ministry since January up until yesterday.

Its minister Datuk Seri Dr S Subramaniam said these cases occurred mostly in the northern states due to the current scorching hot season.

"This because reptiles such as snakes would usually emerge from their natural habitat in search of cooler places when the temperature around them increases," he told reporters.

Kedah reported the highest number of snake bite cases (195), followed by Perak (107) and Selangor (78).

Other states were Terengganu (43), Kelantan (32), Perlis (24) and Penang (37), said Dr Subramaniam.

He also advised the public to be extra observant whenever they encounter cases of snake bites. He said it would be helpful if the type of snake was identified.

“This will make it easier for the attending doctor to identify the snake and provide the right anti-venom," he added.

Dr Subramaniam advised people to immediately get treatment at the nearest government hospital instead of trying to treat the bite by themselves.

“There have been instances where people either tried sucking out the venom, applying compression, tying socks to the affected area to stop the venom from spreading.

“The worst thing one can do is cut off the affected part. For all you know, the snake might not even have been a venomous species in the first place," he said.

Currently, he said there are 139 hospitals throughout the country which provide anti-venom treatment.