Wednesday October 18, 2017

Dengue outbreak shows govt failure on health, sanitation fronts

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New Delhi: Dengue may be on the wane in the capital but patients who were victims of the deadly mosquito-borne disease that till some weeks had the capital in its vice-like grip blame medical negligence and lack of civic awareness for the post-monsoon blight every year.

The total number of dengue cases in the capital has crossed the 12,500 mark, with 32 deaths, municipal authorities admitted earlier this week.

“I was feeling a bit under the weather with high fever and vomiting and suspected dengue infection but the attending doctor at a government hospital prescribed me some general medicines and asked to visit OPD the next day. By the next morning, my condition turned critical and I was rushed to the hospital,” Mahesh Sharma, a resident of south Delhi, told IANS.

“The attending doctor did not take the matter seriously, he claims. “I had severe allergy on my palms which were symptoms of dengue,” Sharma added.

“On my fourth visit to the hospital, one of the doctors advised me to do some tests. The results came in and I was diagnosed with dengue but by then, I was severely affected with the deadly disease,” he pointed out.

Patients feel that the dengue treatment at government hospitals is mediocre when compared to private clinics. The casual attitude and callousness on the part of some doctors in government health centres – especially in the rural areas – make matters worse.

“Unlike city dwellers, we do not have access to the cutting-edge healthcare. We cannot afford to travel to urban areas for treatment or go for expensive tests. Most of the time, we leave the fate of the dengue patients to god,” narrated a farmer from a remote village in Uttar Pradesh.

People in the remote areas do not even have basic information about the symptoms of this disease.

“Every year, we have this alarming situation and the government alone cannot be expected to do everything for us. Unless we remain vigilant in our own colonies and ensure water is not collected anywhere and ensure regular spraying of insecticide is done by civic bodies, such diseases cannot be defeated,” Rachna Kucheria, a general physician practising in Delhi, told IANS here.

Last year Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a nationwide cleanliness campaign or Swachh Bharat Mission.
“But it should not become a mere PR exercise. The state and the people should be practical and strive together to defeat this deadly disease,” Kucheria added.

According to the statistics collected till October 17 by the areas under the South Delhi Municipal Corporation, they have recorded 2,659 dengue cases — the highest in Delhi — while areas under the East Delhi Municipal Corporation have recorded 1,551 cases. The North Delhi Municipal Corporation recorded 2,638 cases. The areas under the New Delhi Municipal Council recorded 197 cases.

The official toll of dengue in the capital stood at 32, but the unofficial deaths confirmed by various hospitals stood at 85.

The first dengue-related death in the capital was recorded on August 5.

(Shamshad Ali, IANS)

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Delhi touches new record with 10,683 dengue cases reported till October 10

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NewsGram Staff Writer

New Delhi: Health authorities said on Monday that with 10,683 dengue cases reported till October 10, Delhi recorded the highest number of patients of the viral disease in 19 years.

The last time dengue cases crossed the 10,000 mark was in 1996, when the city reported 10,252 patients, the authorities added.

The number of dengue cases reported from Delhi’s adjacent areas, suburban Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh, and Gurgaon and Faridabad in Haryana, stood at 646.

According to the figures released by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi, as many as 3,077 new cases were detected in the last one week.

Areas under the South Delhi Municipal Corporation witnessed the highest 2,432 cases while in the East Delhi Municipal Corporation areas witnessed the lowest  with 1,413 cases. The North Delhi Municipal Corporation recorded 2,307 cases in the last one week.

According to civic authorities, the official toll due to dengue in the national capital was 30, though the unofficial figure rose up to over 85.

Among the latest dengue victims confirmed by hospital authorities were a teenager and a 41-year-old man, who succumbed to the vector-borne disease on Sunday.

“The number of fever cases arriving at our hospital is more. The subject needs to be closely observed. In the middle of August, the number of cases went down but it is again rising,” AK Gadhpahilay, medical superintendent of Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, told reporters.

“As winter arrives, dengue cases will see a decline,” he hoped.

A senior emergency medicine expert at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences said, “Dengue seems uncontrollable now. The number of cases witnessed this year clearly indicates that municipal authorities can’t just depend on fumigation and light initiatives to prevent dengue. This has become a regular problem in every monsoon season.”

(With inputs from IANS)

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AAP accuses Congress of politicising dengue deaths

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New Delhi: The Congress party has been accused by Delhi’s ruling AAP of politicising the issue of dengue deaths. Instead of protesting, its members should have donated blood to help patients, said AAP.

“If only the Congress leaders, who have politicised the issue and protested over dengue deaths, had donated blood, it would have helped,” AAP leader Dilip Pandey said while addressing a press conference here.

He said the AAP officials have met private medical practitioners in the city to start “fever clinics”, which would provide treatment to dengue patients for free.

“This is a step to reduce the rush which is seen in government hospitals due to many dengue patients,” Pandey said.

He added that the Delhi government was also taking all possible steps for the patients, like increasing the number of beds in hospitals.

Dengue-AAP workers would also go on a door-to-door survey at homes to find out the dengue situation, he added.

The AAP leader also blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party governed civic bodies for not taking enough preventive measures such as fogging.

He said civic bodies were not doing enough in educating people about the preventive methods to avoid dengue.

Earlier during the day, Congress activists, including Congress Delhi unit chief Ajay Maken, staged a protest outside Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s residence.

The activists alleged that the AAP government’s inefficiency was resulting in the rising cases of dengue in the national capital.

Delhi’s civic bodies have so far confirmed only five dengue deaths and the number of cases as 1,872.

However, deaths caused by dengue have gone up to at least 16 as tracked by IANS.

(IANS)

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Odisha is prepared for dengue

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Bhubaneswar: It is well prepared to tackle dengue, said the Odisha government on Wednesday following the first dengue death of the year in the state.

The deceased Hemanta Jena (32), living in Dwarka area of Delhi where he got infected with the disease, was initially admitted to Capital Hospital in Bhubaneswar and was referred to SCB Medical College in Cuttack after his condition became critical on Monday. He died on Tuesday, said a health official.

There is no panicky situation in Odisha even though one person died due to dengue. We have made available separate wards and arranged laboratories in district hospitals and medical colleges for blood tests this year,” health secretary Arti Ahuja told reporters.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday held a review meeting over the dengue situation.

Ahuja said the government would provide free diagnosis and treatment to suspected dengue patients.

She said about 400 people have tested positive for dengue virus in Odisha.

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Sources said cases were detected in Balasore, Cuttack, Jagantsinghpur, Jajpur, Khurda, Kendrapara, Angul, Balangir and Dhenkanal.

With inputs from IANS