HYDERABAD: As Telangana struggles with a dengue epidemic in the cities, and a malaria epidemic in tribal areas, health minister Etala Rajender was spotted supervising the functioning of Fever Hospital on Tuesday morning. The hospital had recorded the highest number of dengue cases of the season, earlier this week. The minister spoke to the patients, checked the out-patient department and the services meted out to the patients.
He also said that the leaves of doctors in government hospitals have been cancelled, and all government hospitals are functioning on Sundays as well. Multiple districts were also identified as high-risk areas, including, Mahbubnagar, Hyderabad, Mulugu, Rangareddy, Nizamabad, Khammam, Medchal and Warangal (urban).
At the hospital, the minister took note of the huge crowd of patients and said, “The number of counters for doctors’ consultation in the out-patient department has been increased from six to 25. If there is a requirement, we will be increasing it by 10 more counters.”
However, he further added, “The situation is not as grave as people are assuming it to be. Although 51,000 people have registered in the OPD at Fever hospital in August, only 61 cases tested positive for dengue.” He had previously also claimed that no dengue deaths have been reported from Fever Hospital. However, Osmania General Hospital’s superintendent, Dr B Nagender confirmed that on August 23, a 20-year-old youth from Dammaiguda had succumbed to dengue after being referred from Fever Hospital with a platelet count of 11,000.
Earlier, the health minister also conducted a high profile review meeting on Monday to discuss the health crisis in the State.
“The Telangana government has taken special measures like the opening of 24-hour Out-Patient Department (OPD) services to control cases of dengue in the State. Special measures have been taken by the government like the opening of OPD services in Osmania General Hospital, Gandhi Hospital, among others, where services are available for 24 hours, including on holidays”, said he. Rajender at the meeting , further added, “Tests for dengue are being conducted absolutely free of cost in these hospitals, we have also initiated measures to spread awareness regarding protection from these diseases.”