Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Khurda, Jun 29:
With the onset of monsoon, the deadly dengue rears its ugly head in the Odisha capital and the city outskirts creating havoc among people for the last few years. This trend has shown a marked increase in the last few monsoons.
According to a survey conducted by the Health department, the Aedes aegypti mosquito can transmit the viruses that cause dengue fever and are potential carriers of four distinct serotypes of the virus (DEN-1, DEN-2, DEN-3, and DEN-4). Dengue haemorrhagic fever and Dengue Shock Syndrome (DSS) are a dangerous complication of dengue infection and are associated with high mortality.
As per last year’s data of Health department, the dengue viruses found in Odisha were transported from outside the state. Shockingly, district health department data shows that the 136 dengue patients identified last year in Khurda district were neither residents of Khurda nor had acquired the infection here. The infected were either Odias residing outside or non-residents who had brought infection from other states. Similarly, 89 dengue patients were identified in Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) area.
A case in point is that of Saeed Mushaddin (28), who was identified as dengue positive at Balipatna CHC last year. He was afflicted with the infection during his stay at a relative’s place on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar. Similarly, one Jitu Jena from Unit VI area in the Odisha capital was infected with dengue while he had gone to Mumbai.
Notably, more patients were identified in community health centres in Khurda district and BMC area as compared to Khurda city limits. Five patients were identified from Khurda city outskirts, 11 from Tangi, two from Banapur, three from Mendhasala, four from Balugaon and Balipatana, two from Balakati, three from Haladia, four from Botalama CHC under Bolagarh block, two from Bankoi and three from Jatani were identified as dengue patients. This apart, details of the four other patients could not be found.
“The dengue patients identified under Khurda district were originally not from the district. Some Odias who got treated for dengue here got infected from outside. Though dengue mosquitoes are in abundance in Khurda district, there is no evidence that these mosquitoes are spreading the infection,” District Malaria Officer, Dr Deven Kumar Das said.
It may be mentioned that the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which transmits the dengue virus, lays eggs and its breeding proliferates in stagnant waters like– barrels, drums, jars, pots, buckets, vases, bottles, tins, tyres, water coolers etc.
As there are a number of motor garages, abandoned pits and quaries in and around Bhubaneswar, the residents are vulnerable to the dengue virus. Proper environment management could lead to prevention and control of the vector-borne infection. As monsoon has already arrived, the climatic condition is perfect for the breeding of the mosquitoes. In view of this, the health department is taking necessary steps to create awareness to identify infection in people coming from outside states.