The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) has decided to rope in students of municipal and private schools to carry out surveys of possible mosquito breeding areas in their vicinity to contain the vector-borne diseases in the city. Forms issued by the AMC, seeking details of all possible breeding sites and if these were found to be positive, will appear in the newspapers in a day or two. These have to be filled by each student and submitted to their teachers. These will be then forwarded to the civic health department the same week.
“The idea behind such a campaign involving students is to spread awareness as well as check all possible breeding sites for mosquitoes. Children are the best agents for change and they can set an example for elders to take a serious note of the problem,” said city health officer Dr Bhavin Solanki.
Apart from family elder’s name, with the total number of family members as well as fever cases in the house reported in the last 15 days, the single-page form seeks details of barrels, bins, tub, pots, underground tanks, overhead tanks, other water tanks, plastic containers, tyres, scrap, water containers for birds, water cooler, refrigerator, flower vase, coconut shells and others checked and if there was mosquito breeding at these sites.
AMC is also facing allegations of under-reporting of malaria and dengue cases. As there is ambiguity in the numbers reported by city’s private hospitals and municipal hospitals. So far, as per the AMC records, there have been two dengue deaths so far this year.
Celebration of dry day
The AMC is also organising a ‘Dry Day’ on Thursday. Under this, political as well as administrative members of the AMC will visit different areas in each zone. They will spread awareness for prevention of mosquito breeding and also check various sites.
AMC has already started distribution of an ayurvedic concoction at public places like gardens. The concoction is similar to the one administered last year against Swine flu. It basically strengthens body’s immunity to fight against viral fevers. “In the coming days, AMC will aggressively carry out awareness drives, along with preventive action plans aiming at putting a check to spread of vector-borne diseases,” said mayor Gautam Shah. A monthly comparison of vector-borne diseases, like malaria, dengue and chikungunya, between 2015 and 2016 reflects the problem being severe in September last year against August this year.