Although dengue is considered the biggest threat to public health in recent times,Vadodara city has witnessed a sharp rise in the number of cases of falciparum malaria (the most dangerous type of malaria,which is caused by parasite Plasmodium falciparum) this year.
According to statistics of the reported cases of malaria available with the VMCs health department,Vadodara has recorded a total of 1,101 cases of malaria from January to August,this year 80 of which are falciparum.
However,VMC health officers say that the threat of malaria cannot be eliminated completely during the phase when the virus is transmitted during monsoon.
In 2012,until July,Vadodara had recorded a total of 1,061 cases of malaria,out of which 63 tested positive for falciparum. This year,in August alone,56 cases of malaria were reported and eight cases tested positive for falciparum.
Though VMC officials point out at the declining number of overall cases of malaria being reported this year as compared to last year,the increase in the number of critical malaria cases is a major concern for the authorities.
Health officers of the VMC,who are overseeing the health activities in various wards,say though there is sufficient grant for fumigation and other steps to prevent malaria,a complete elimination of the virus is impractical.
It cannot be completely eradicated as there is a period during which the mosquitoes breed and are transmitting the virus to those exposed to mosquito bites, officials say.
Doctors at private hospitals say that many cases go unreported as the VMC only shows the number of cases that it records from government hospitals. A doctor from SSG Hospital in Vadodara says,The VMC seeks data from the government hospitals. However,private hospitals are not reporting all cases of detected malaria,which would certainly add up to the number.
4 dengue deaths in Aug-Sep
With the AMC confirming that one person died due to dengue last Sunday in Behrampura,the number of dengue deaths in August-September has gone up to four. AMCs Medical Officer,Health,Dr S P Kulkarni said that the number would go up to seven if three deaths in August were confirmed to be due to dengue. He added said that 11 persons died of falciparum malaria in civic hospitals and five in private hospitals from August 1 to September 10.
Refuting reports that dengue virus was sending confusing signals,making diagnosis difficult,he said that there was no scientific basis for this at the AMC level.
The number of dengue cases was reported to be 160 in September; besides there were 49 cases of chikungunea,266 of simple malaria and 58 of falciparum malaria,he said. In August and September,there was a marginal decline in the number of fresh cases of cholera,typhoid and jaundice.
He said that the malaria and dysentery cases would begin to decline November onwards. ENS