NEW DELHI: At least 11 fresh cases of malaria have been reported during the past week in Delhi, pushing the total number of people affected by the vector-borne disease this season to 40, according to a municipal report released today.
Only four fresh cases of dengue, another vector-borne disease, were reported in Delhi between June 16-23, meaning malaria spread faster than dengue in the national capital.
Of the total 40 malaria cases, 19 were reported in June, 17 in May, one each in April and March, and two in February.
Of the 28 dengue cases this season, six were reported in January, three in February, one in March, two in April and 10 last month and six in June, according to the report.
"It is not unusual for malaria cases to be reported in larger number compared to dengue, as both have different carriers," a senior doctor at a government-run hospital said.
"But people must take all precautions, like wearing full-sleeved clothes and not allowing breeding of mosquito larvae inside homes. Water coolers should be dried up when not in use as dengue infection - carrying mosquitoes breed there a lot," she said.
The cases of vector-borne diseases are usually reported between July and November, but the period may stretch to mid-December.
No vector-borne disease case was reported till January 13.
Also, no fresh case of chikungunya was reported in the past one week, the figure remaining at 14.
But the report said domestic breeding checkers have found mosquito-breeding in 38,021 households in the city till June 23.
It said 44,020 legal notices have been served for various violations and "3,073 prosecutions have been initiated".
Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal last month asked officials to spread awareness and sensitise people to prevent vector-borne diseases.
He told them that crisp messages, particularly in vernacular languages, must be disseminated, besides involving school students in the awareness-generation drive.
Baijal has ordered local bodies to regularly monitor the work of domestic breeding checkers and fix accountability.
The L-G had emphasised that local bodies must prioritise areas identified by the health department as most vulnerable to mosquito-breeding.
Ten people died due to dengue in Delhi last year, according to the South Delhi Municipal Corporation, which tabulates data for the entire city.
Five of the victims were not Delhi residents, but they died in the national capital.
Overall, the vector-borne disease has affected 9,271 people in the city last year.
The official toll maintained by Delhi municipal authorities till December 26 stood at four, even though some hospitals reported a few more deaths due to dengue.
The mosquito-borne tropical disease had claimed its first victim in the city last year on August 1 when a 12-year-old boy died of dengue shock syndrome at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.
Three more deaths were reported in October by the SDMC.
The number of malaria and chikungunya cases reported last year stood at 1,142 and 940 respectively.