Telangana

Monsoon brings in its wake vector-borne diseases

There has been a spurt in diseases such as malaria, dengue, and chikungunya, which could be life-threatening in some cases

With the monsoon setting in after delay of a fortnight from the expected date, there has been a spurt in vector-borne diseases such as malaria, dengue, and chikungunya, which could be life-threatening in some cases and entails huge expenses for treatment.

Over the years, except in the first six months of this year, the highest number of vector-borne diseases have been reported from five districts, predominantly from tribal localities in Telangana. Officials are gearing up to control the rising number of cases this season.

In the year of 2018, 56.4 per-cent of total (4,461) dengue cases in the State were reported from Khammam, Adilabad, Kothagudem, Mahabubnagar, and Hyderabad. In case of malaria last year, 84.6 per cent of total 1,772 cases were reported from Bhupalapally, Kothagudem, Asifabad and Hyderabad. And 87 per cent of Chikungunya cases (489) were reported from Khammam, Karimnagar, Hyderabad and Ranga Reddy districts.

This year, from January to June of 22, 76.7 per cent of malaria cases were reported from Hyderabad, Kothagudem, Medchal, Ranga Reddy districts. Over 47 per cent of dengue cases are from Hyderabad, Ranga Reddy, Khammam and Mahabubgnagar and 67.7 per cent of Chikungunya cases were detected in Nalgonda, Khammam and Hyderabad. However, officials said districts with high number of cases might change after the end of the monsoon.

Control of diseases

Every year, when the monsoon sets in, government officials and the minister concerned hold meeting to discuss ways to control the diseases.

Last fortnight, Telangana Health Minister Eatala Rajender held a meeting with district Collectors where high risk districts and strategies for controlling the vector-borne diseases came up for discussions over a day-long meeting.

Further, 1,697 villages and 75 primary health centres at high risk were identified. Officials said that methods for controlling mosquito breeding include release of larvivorous fish — such as gambusia fish which feed on larvae — into water bodies, indoor residual spraying (IRS), use of insecticide treated bed nets, and ensuring that water does not stagnate anywhere.

Disease management includes detecting the diseases in early stages and providing treatment, strengthening referral services, preparedness for the epidemic.

Officials and staff from the Health Department responsible for the various activities were selected.

For instance, District Medical and Health Officer, and programme officer at national Vector Borne Diseases Control Programme (NVBDCP) were assigned the task for training medical officers, supervisors, and accredited social health activists (ASHA).

Training sessions

Programme officer at NVBDCP Dr S. Prabhavathi said that steps for controlling and transmission of the diseases have been initiated.

“Training sessions will be completed in one week. Indoor residual spraying has started,” the programme officer added.

Officials said that the Health Minister might visit the tribal localities to check how the tasks are being executed.

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 4:41:40 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/telangana/monsoon-brings-in-its-wake-vector-borne-diseases/article28236660.ece

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