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Malaria cases on the rise,elections,construction work blamed

After the election,the number of mosquitoes seems to have increased.

Written by Express News Service | Mumbai |
May 10, 2009 10:19:25 pm

After the election,the number of mosquitoes seems to have increased. It is being blamed on the elections,as the officers from the insecticide department,anti-malarial activities,were on election duty,due to which steps to control mosquitoes took the backseat. This has resulted in a high number of malaria cases,too. 

Of the 53,483 blood samples collected and screened in April,1,351 were tested positive for malaria. Of these 67 were cases of falciparum malaria and the rest were vivax malaria cases.

“There is a slight rise in the malaria cases in the city this season. This is due to large scale construction carried out in the city. There are a total of 55 construction projects currently in the city of which 42 are on the western side and 13 on the eastern side,” said Dr Jairaj Thanekar,executive health officer,Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s health department. “Construction labourers coming from Jharkhand,Orissa,Chattisgarh,Andhar Pradesh and West Bengal,all endemic areas for malaria,are a big cause of concern for us,” added Dr Thanekar.

The routinely carried fogging operations during the pre-monsoon season have taken a backseat due to elections as many concerned officers were put on election duty. “Currently the insecticide department is short staffed with 20 per cent of its officers on election duty and three per cent on long election duty. However,we have called the officers back on duty under emergency services act and have started anti-malarial activities in full swing,” added Dr Thanekar. BMC is currently observing malaria week and is also carrying out an awareness programme.

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BMC has kept 1,289 reserved beds for patients with monsoon ailments and has also purchased diagnostic kits worth Rs 25 lakh and medicines worth Rs 4 crore.                        

Meanwhile,BMC,insecticide officer,Deepak Adsul in a mail to the five star hotels in Sahar area has pointed out to the growing menace of mosquitoes. 

“We fully agree on the mosquito menace in this part of the city. All the representatives of the five star hotels near airport area will meet up next week to decide on the course of action to fight the menace,” said Shelove More,housekeeping manager at Hyatt Regency,Mumbai.

As compared to last year the number of typhoid cases have also increased in the city with 108 cases already registered in just one week as compared to 70 last year. Even fever cases have increased compared to last year in the same span of one week from April 27. Last week 804 fever cases were recorded as compared to 557 during the same period last year.

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