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Mumbai Emergency Room: Promoting preventive care for monsoon-borne diseases

Armed with kit to test for dengue and malaria, and various kinds of medication, each volunteer has been given a target of 60 houses on a daily basis to ensure early detection of diseases.

Written by Arita Sarkar | Mumbai | Updated: July 7, 2016 3:16:20 am

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This monsoon, more than 6,000 community health volunteers have set out to combat monsoon-related illnesses while aggressively promoting preventive care as part of the house-to-house survey of the slum population.

Armed with kit to test for dengue and malaria, and various kinds of medication, each volunteer has been given a target of 60 houses on a daily basis to ensure early detection of diseases.

There are more than 200 health posts across the city and around 30 community health volunteers have been allotted to each post along with other auxiliary nurses and midwives. “Our aim is to treat them when the symptoms are just beginning to show so that they can be treated at home and preventive measures can be taken to ensure there is no contamination. They primarily look for fever among other signs of diseases that spread, especially during the monsoons,” said Dr M Khetarpal, deputy executive health officer. She added that the volunteers conduct tests and the results are sent to the nearest dispensary.

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Each of the volunteers are equipped well to handle diseases, such as malaria, dengue, leptospirosis, gastrointestinal infections, typhoid and hepatitis. The volunteers also try to eradicate the source of the disease they may have diagnosed in a household. They also distribute chlorine tablets and ORS satchets.

As per figures collected on July 5, there were 27 cases of malaria, six of dengue, two cases of leptospirosis, 52 cases of gastrointestinal infections and three cases of typhoid at the civic hospitals.

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