THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In view of the impending monsoon season, the Health Department, which has already launched a general epidemic preparedness, is giving more prominence to Dengue fever with the number of cases showing an increase in the last three years.
“A general epidemic preparedness has already been in place.
However, the number of dengue cases has seen a rise in the state in the last three years, especially in the months of May, June and July. This has led the officials of the Health Department to be watchful against dengue outbreaks,” highly placed officials in the Health Department said.
The Health Department records say that 310 cases of dengue and two deaths have already been reported in the state from January to April this year. When 7,911 dengue cases and 25 deaths were reported in 2013, 4,056 cases and 16 deaths were reported in 2012. In 2011, a total of 1,304 dengue cases and 10 deaths were reported.
When looking at month-wise report, during June and July, when the monsoon lashes the state, there had been an increase in the number of dengue cases.
The statistics show that 1,036 dengue cases and seven deaths were reported in May 2013, 2,168 cases and six deaths in June and 1,865 cases and five deaths in July 2013.
Meanwhile, 162 cases and one death were reported in May 2012, 602 cases in June and 705 cases and two deaths in July 2012. These figures were low in 2011 which had reported 84 cases in May, 168 in June and 129 in July.
The officials pointed out that all these figures show that there has been a steady increase in the number of dengue cases in the last year and mainly in the three months when the state received monsoon rains.
Pointing out that Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Idukki, Ernakulam and Malappuram had shown an increase in the number of dengue cases than the other districts, the officials said that focus would be on these districts.
Health Minister V S Sivakumar said that the department was more cautious of any outbreak.
“The drive against monsoon related diseases was effective in the last years and we will continue with such drives,’’ he said.
In case of dengue, he said that more dengue cases were reported from southern districts and all medical officers have been instructed to be more cautious.
“Not only dengue but we are on an alert against all monsoon related diseases and the department is gearing up for this” he said.
As part of the drive against dengue, all the DMOs have been asked to take necessary precautions against dengue.
It has been decided to launch an awareness campaign and a mosquito eradication drive. Apart from the health workers, Kudumbashree, anganwadi and Asha workers would also be roped in to join the initiative.
“The coastal areas, which are considered to be a bit sensitive, will be given more attention,” they said.