There has been an alarming rise in malaria and dengue cases in Visakhapatnam district this season. While 70 cases of dengue have been reported, 5,652 malaria cases registered in the district since January this year. Fortunately, no death has been reported so far.
“Compared to 70 cases of dengue this year, only 9 such cases were reported in 2011,” said district medical and health officer (DM&HO) Dr G Savitri, adding that there has been a slight decrease in malaria patients this year from 6,896 cases registered last year.
According to the DM&HO, blood samples of 440 patients were collected, out of which, 70 dengue cases have been confirmed.
The patients are being provided treatment at various hospitals including the King George Hospital (KGH) in Visakhaptanam city. The samples were sent to the Andhra Medical College and KGH, wherein the cases can be confirmed.
Currently, four patients from Srikakulam and Vizianagaram are undergoing treatment at the KGH where a special ward has been arranged for dengue patients. “We cannot say how badly the dengue has hit the region.
But, the diseases are mostly occurring in urban areas due to poor sanitation and contaminated water,” said Dr G Savitri. The jump is startling considering the fact that there had been no major rainfall in the last two months. September, however, saw heavy rain almost on a daily basis.
When contacted, the Greater Visakhapatnam Medical Corporation’s officials said they have formed special teams, in association with district malaria department, to conduct house-to-house survey to know the health condition of each person in the urban and 43 mandals in the district.
At a ‘Meet The Press’ programme recently, district collector V Seshadri said the number of malaria cases and seasonal diseases in GVMC area was equal to the number of cases reported from the rural and Agency areas. Thus the district appeared to be endemic, he said.