KHAMMAM: Though there is a rise in the cases of filariasis in five mandals of Khammam district, the district administration is not taking steps to prevent it. Cases of filariasis (worm infestation) have been reported in nine primary health centres (PHCs) in the district and is steadily rising every month.
According to official records, about 3,037 cases of filariasis have been reported in Khammam and Bhadradri Kothagudem districts with 2,886 cases in Khammam alone.
Recently, 30 new cases were identified in Tirumalayapalem mandal. Medical and health department officials have conducted survey in eight places — Kakarlavai, Patarlapadu, Tattelapadu, Subledu, Medipalli, Bacchodu and Rajaram. Officials collected 4,120 blood samples and examined about 2,000 blood samples at the Filariasis unit in Suryapet. They have identified about 30 positive cases. According to a retired medical and health (DMHO) official, cases of filariasis have been increasing mainly in five mandals due to lack of focus by the district.
According to medical and health department, filariasis has been identified in Tirumalayapalem, Kusumanchi, Mudigonda, Nelakondapalli and Chintakani mandals. There was a proposal for setting up a filariasis unit in Khammam but it has been put in the cold storage for various reasons due to which identifying of cases has become a problematic for officials. According to an official, when cases of filariasis affects 10 per cent of the population, the district will be announced as an endemic district.
However, it’s not clear as to what percentage of the population has been affected as there is lack of survey and identification, he claimed. Once government declares a district endemic, automatically all facilities would be made available to patients and steps would be taken to prevent it from spreading. “I have been suffering with filariasis for last eight years. I am unable to walk and work. I cannot be too close to other people,” K Rama Rao of Kakaravai village said, appealing the State government to curb the disease.
District malaria officer Dr A Rambabu said that due to dirty and stagnated water, culex mosquitoes are born and micro filariasis transmit into the body and get settled in limp glands and start producing micro filaria in millions when they bite human beings.