Hyderabad: The city is in the grip of dengue cases, with 15 to 20 cases being detected in every circle of the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation but not recorded by the authorities. There are 30 circles of GHMC in Hyderabad and there is gross under reporting of these cases, allege corporators. The concept of dry day on Friday is not being followed and that is adding to the woes with breeding continuing despite the information and awareness programmes.
The state health department in the city is not having its regular epidemiology meetings as the officials are busy with the eye screening camps of the government’s Kanti Velugu scheme. A senior health official in the Hyderabad circle explained, “The regular meetings between the GHMC and the state Health Department are not being held. In these meetings, the identified points of dengue were discussed and follow-up action recorded. The initiative taken by both departments would ensure that people at the ground level were complying with the rules of dry day due to checks. Even the regular spraying on one day of the week is not being carried out.”
With staff crunch in the health department, only statistical records of the dengue cases, which are being detected and self-reported by hospitals, are being maintained. Corporators, of both the ruling party and the opposition, have raised a hue and cry over the increasing dengue cases in the city. A senior general physician at Begumpet, on condition of anonymity, explained, “Those who stay close to open nalas, tanks, lakes and Musi have a severe mosquito problem due to the sewage waters. But these are further compounded with water stagnation in overhead tanks, fish ponds, flowerpot trays etc. which become breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Dengue mosquitoes breed in clean water and it is important that the dry day regime be followed strictly across all homes. But it is not being done. Instead, when doctors report cases, they are being blamed for sensationalising the issue and scaring the people.”
Precautions like wearing full sleeves, using mosquito repellents and not allowing fresh water to stagnate in containers around the house are important to control dengue. There is a need for both government effort, in terms of fogging which is not being adequately carried out, and community participation, lack of which is adding to the menace....