Cleanliness of the house and surroundings is key factor

The Indian Medical Association (IMA), Kozhikode Branch, has been organising a campaign —‘Venda Namukkini Panimaranangal’ (We don’t need any more fever deaths) — for the last two years ahead of the monsoon season that corresponds with the breakout of many an epidemic. With the help of residents’ associations in the city, the IMA played a major role in reducing fever deaths in the district in 2013.

On the third season of the campaign, since there is an active network of residents’ associations already in place, the IMA’s role is limited to creating awareness among the public. The associations have already been alerted on the steps to be taken to control the growth of mosquitoes and rats before the onset of monsoon.

Cleanliness of the house and surroundings is the key factor. Drainages and wells and other water sources have to be cleaned. Stagnant water ditches have to be filled.

Mosquitoes

All kinds of articles such as coconut shells, broken utensils, areca nut leaves, and other leaves have to be removed. There is a high possibility of mosquitoes multiplying in rubber plantations. This could be changed by keeping the coconut shells used for collecting latex turned down. Shrubbery should be removed because they shelter Oedis mosquitoes during the day. Slabs of septic tanks should be properly sealed and wind-pipes should be netted.

Above all, there should be facilities to process organic waste at the source.

Waste segregation

The IMA has given specific guidelines on what to do about solid waste and how to segregate it into those that decompose, those that do not, and hazardous waste. Moreover, it has given guidelines on personal hygiene. The association has also made suggestions on what to do in case of infections.

However, the campaign alone will not earn results. “It is up to the local bodies and residents’ associations to follow the directions. All we can do is advise,” said K.P. Balakrishnan, president of the association, who was also the chairman of the district task force against epidemics in 2013.

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