The district health administration has decided to implement a special scheme in the coastal areas as part of intensifying preventive and control measures against the spread of fever, infectious diseases and other monsoon-related diseases.

Eight cases of dengue fever and one case of leptospirosis were confirmed in the district on Monday.

A meeting of the district-level Rapid Response Team held here on Monday decided that special measures be adopted in the coastal areas, including mass fogging, indoor residual spraying, biological vector-control measures such as depositing larva-eating fishes in wells, and awareness programmes to prevent the outbreak of malaria and dengue fever.

Junior health inspectors in the coastal wards will be trained under the district malaria officer to conduct mass fogging this week. The district health officials are planning to launch mass fogging in the wards on Saturday.

A week of intensive fogging will be followed by indoor residual spraying and guppy fishes will be deposited in the wells in the area. District-level officials will monitor the operations regularly. It has also been decided to call the ward-level sanitation committees and intensify local disease prevention and control activities.

Apart from the 12 mobile health clinics operating in the district, two such clinics will start operating in the Corporation areas on Wednesday. Ajayakumar, Health Supervisor of the Corporation, said in the meeting that fogging, spraying and source reduction activities were being carried out in the urban areas effectively.

The District Medical Officer, who chaired the meeting, said fish hatcheries in the district would be revived.

It has also been decided to give training to medical officers in district and taluk hospitals and in private hospitals in screening for H1N1 infection. Oseltamivir tablets have been made available in all block-level hospitals. The DMO said disease surveillance would be intensified across the district with the help of ASHA workers.

However, as per the Union Health Ministry's guidelines, there was no need to collect throat swabs from everyone with flu symptoms, he said. H1N1 testing was restricted to only those with severe symptoms or progressive illness or those in the high risk group such as pregnant women.

Amar Fettle, State nodal officer for H1N1, and other senior Health officials took part in the meeting.