SAMBALPUR: After the jaundice outbreak following recent flood which left behind a trail of devastation, dengue has raised its ugly head in Sambalpur town.
Sources said as drinking water supply pipes were damaged at several places allowing the drain water to enter the pipelines, there was a sudden rise in cases of jaundice after the flood.
Now, with eight cases of dengue-related deaths reported over the last two months at VSS Medical College and Hospital at Burla, people are a worried lot. Sambalpur District Malaria Officer Dr Ashok Das said preventive steps have been taken to check the spread of the vector borne disease.
According to reports, eight persons have died at the VSS Medical College and Hospital including Renuka Seth (19) of Kotna village in Jharbandh block and Chitrasen Majhi (17) of Icchapur village in Paikmal block of Bargarh district.
The other six who have succumbed to the disease are Gahala Sahu (52) of Sohela in Bargarh district, Muralidhar Rajhans (20) of Saintala in Balangir, Ramakanta Dhundi (18) of Titlagarh, Girdhari Dharua (22) of Tusra in Balangir, Gitanjali Bagh (35) and Jayanti Bhoi (20) of Balangir.
Sources said so far, more than 75 persons suffering from dengue have been admitted to VSS Medical of which 25 are undergoing treatment. It is learnt that delay in diagnosis of the disease and shifting of patients to VSS Medical have led to increase in the casualty figure.
Patients from neighbouring States are also referred to VSS Medical. As the Isolation Ward above Casualty in the hospital has been closed for renovation, the authorities are forced to accommodate the patients in Medicine Department and High Dependent Unit (HDU) thereby putting safety of other patients at risk. Moreover, patients are treated on the floor in absence of adequate number of beds in the hospital.
Though it has been two months since the hospital has been witnessing a spurt in dengue cases, it is yet to make the Isolation Ward operational.
However, Malaria Officer Das allayed fears of dengue outbreak in Sambalpur and said majority of the cases are from outside the district.
He said massive spraying of malaria larvicidal oil is being done regularly and efforts are underway to get rid of stagnant water.
People should ensure that no water is stagnated in the vicinity of their houses, he added.