VISAKHAPATNAM: The death of a seven-year-old boy from Vizianagaram of suspected dengue in the paediatric ward of the King George Hospital (KGH) here on Sunday, created a scare among health officials in the district. In the past one week, government and private hospitals in the district have been flooded with patients suffering from viral fevers and suspected dengue from Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram and Srikakulam districts.
Of the 10-15 fever cases reported at the KGH daily, on an average, around two are reported to be testing positive for dengue.
Though dengue and malaria cases have decreased in the ciy this year as compared to last year, about 100 cases were reported till today in September. About 245 dengue cases were reported from Vizag this year till now, while last year the figure stood at 2,250.
According to health officials, sudden showers and stagnant water at many places have reportedly abetted seasonal fevers. According to KGH officials, many suspected dengue cases were referred from private hospitals after the patient’s condition turned serious. People got admitted with fevers but when the patient’s condition turned serious, they were told to go to the KGH. Most of the patients from the three north Andhra districts were reportedly from urban areas.
The KGH paediatrics ward was crowded with children reportedly suffering from viral and suspected dengue fevers. The ward had a special intensive care unit where two children shared one bed, a sign of the growing number of cases reported daily. “In the last two weeks, many children from the three north Andhra districts and Odisha got admitted. Out of the 10-15 suspected dengue cases, two to three turned positive. Two or three children have died till now of suspected dengue. Problem comes when the serious cases are shifted from private hospitals,” said a KGH doctor.
In the KGH virology department, around 90 to 100 suspected dengue blood samples registered for test in the last two weeks. According to a source in the Virology department, not more than 40 dengue tests were conducted in the earlier months, but in the last two weeks at least 100 dengue tests were conducted out of which about 25 turned out to be dengue positive from the three districts. Till Sunday afternoon, 94 dengue tests wee conducted. Speaking to TNIE, DMHO S Tirupathi Rao said, “Compared to last year, dengue and malaria cases decreased but incidents of viral fever have increased. Last year, every house had a viral fever patient with 40 to 50 cases being registered at KGH everyday.”