The health department has started house-to-house screening in slum areas to prevent the possible outbreak of vector-borne diseases in the city. Health officials said starting next month, the screening would be started in all the sectors in the city. Fearing the cases of dengue in the next few months, the health officials said they have stepped up efforts. Dr Gaurav Aggarwal, anti-malaria officer, Chandigarh health department, said: “We have started screening programmes in slum areas. All the areas have been identified that we expect could become the breeding points for the mosquitoes.”
He said during the screening, the field units are looking for mosquito-prone conditions.
So far, no case of dengue and chikungunya has been reported in the city, he added. The officer, however, said cases are being reported in the city hospitals where the patients are dengue and chikungunya positive, but they are found to have got a bite a few months ago.
Taking preventive measures, the health department started the process of fogging in the city early this year. Several sectors have been covered by the department, officials said.
According to the health department, the field units of the department are also creating awareness about the vector-borne diseases in the city. “Awareness will play a role in combating the disease. The department is taking all steps to make the people aware and they have take preventive measures by keeping their surroundings clean,” said Dr Gaurav.
The health officials said last year, the maximum cases were reported from inside the houses.
The Tricity has already recorded a swine flu death after a 32-year-old patient from Panchkula district died at the Government Medical College & Hospital in Sector 32.
Officials ask hospitals to report cases of zika virus
According to the health department, they have asked the city hospitals to report cases of microcephaly (birth defects in newborn). Microcephaly is caused because of zika virus. The virus is believed to get transmitted through the bite of mosquito Aedes aegypti. The same mosquito also spreads yellow fever, dengue and chikungunya.
The World Health Organisation has recently confirmed the first three cases of zika virus reported in the country.
According to the health department, no sample has been sent so far to the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, which is also the testing facility for zika virus.
Last year, the department had sent three samples to a lab in Pune and they were tested negative.