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Dengue season in Delhi, officials up their guard

By Anuj Cariappa

New Delhi, July 08: As the season for spread of vector-borne diseases has kicked in, the city government's health department and local bodies are gearing up to check any possible outbreak of dengue, whose virus thrives during this period.

From building awareness to conducting workshop for officials and common man, authorities are bracing up to contain any spread of these diseases.

Dengue season in Delhi, officials up their guard

At least 22 dengue cases and 44 of malaria have been reported in Delhi this year till June, even though the vector-borne disease is usually reported between July and November, according to the latest municipal report on vector-borne diseases.

Last year, 2,798 dengue cases and four deaths were recorded by the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), which tabulates the data on these diseases in the city.

With the dengue season kicking in, civic authorities and Delhi health department have stepped up their campaigns.

Besides, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan last week asked the Delhi government to make malaria and dengue notifiable diseases and work for making the national capital "vector free".

He also sought appointment of nodal officers at all city hospitals, including the private ones, to ensure government and private interventions and efforts to prevent the vector-borne diseases are in tandem.

He said this in a review meet to assess the preparedness for prevention and control of vector-borne diseases like malaria, dengue, and chikungunya in the national capital, which was attended by Delhi Health Minister Satyendra Jain, ICMR Director General Dr Balram Bhargava, Delhi Health Secretary, among others.

According to the municipal report, 35 cases of malaria were reported in the month of June only, while 11 of dengue were recorded in the same month.

Hyderabad: Alarming rise in viral fever, dengue, chikungunya cases

Ten cases of chikungunya have also been reported till June 29.

Civic authorities from the three corporations and the New Delhi Municipal Council have intensified the awareness drive and provisions are also being made so that there is minimum water stagnation in residential areas.

The East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) has set up a round-the-clock helpline - 155303 to report about waterlogging, collapse of building and its part, falling of trees or its branches.

Corporation in North Delhi and South Delhi have also drawn up plans to combat any possible outbreak of dengue.

"We are gearing up to check spread of dengue and other cases in large number. Besides, awareness building measures, workshops are being conducted for officials and general people to sensitise them on preventive measures," a senior civic official said.

Authorities are also conducting regular inspection to check breeding of mosquitoes in households.

Mosquito-breeding has been reported in at least 29,702 households and 30,461 legal notices have been issued this year.

Also, 473 cases of malaria and 165 cases of chikunguniya were reported last year.

According to the SDMC, 10 people had died due to dengue in Delhi in 2017, of whom five were not residents of the national capital.

Overall, the vector-borne disease had affected 9,271 people in the city in 2017.

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