Dengue has begun to spread its tentacles to more parts of the State with at least 77 positive cases reported from several districts.
Cuttack has been the worst hit with 48 patients testing dengue positive while the Capital city of Bhubaneswar has reported seven cases as on Sunday. Ganjam, Angul, Dhenkanal, Jajpur and Mayurbhanj have reported six, five, seven, three and one respectively.
A total of 399 samples have been tested till date. There has, however, been no death due to the hemorrhagic fever in the State.
With the situation at Cuttack fast turning alarming with 11 cases testing positive on Saturday, the SCB Medical College and Hospital authorities have increased the beds in the special dengue ward from 30 to 50. Around 37 patients are being treated in the ward while two have been admitted to the ICU.
The Government, taking note of the situation, has intensified interventions for vector control, prevention and awareness generation in the affected and vulnerable areas.
While anti-larvicidal operations along with fogging and cleaning are being taken on a war footing, the Health and Family Welfare Department has deployed volunteers to conduct door-to-door campaigns on educating as well as assisting them in cleaning the households.
Around 2,090 volunteers will be engaged across the State for the next four months. Already more than 100 volunteers each have been deployed in Cuttack, which this year has registered the highest concentration of dengue cases, Bhubaneswar, Berhampur, Angul, Dhenkanal and Talcher, etc.., deputy director of National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP) Dr Madan Pradhan. “The volunteers have been engaged to establish direct contact with the people.
From experience, we have realised that publicity through advertisements, mike announcements and television channels has not yielded desired results. The volunteers would reach out to the households and demonstrate the steps need to be taken like preventing water accumulation in discarded pots, vessels, tyres and open septic tanks, which are ideal breeding sites for aedes egypti mosquitoes that are carriers of the dengue virus and thus be more effective,” Pradhan said.
At Cuttack, the city health officials have started a major cleanliness drive in the affected wards of 21 and 23 while the operations are being extended to all the other parts.
Special squads have also been formed to undertake house to house survey for breeding sites and cleaning them.
Around 17 teams are working in Ward 21 and 12 in ward 23 comprising areas of Rausapatna, Nimasahi, Kehsarpur, etc Ward level teams with sanitary inspectors and other workers have also started visiting other areas while fogging, bush cutting and anti-larvicidal operations have been intensified”, city health officer Dr PK Pradhan said.