LAHORE: A comprehensive plan is being implemented to control malaria and other infectious diseases in the flood-hit areas of Punjab, according to the health department.
The department carried out fumigation to control the epidemics in affected districts. The office of the Directorate General of Health had been shifted to Dera Ghazi Khan, and was working to check epidemics and infectious diseases . The officials claimed that a sufficient stock of medicines was available in the medical relief camps. The supply of medicines from Lahore and Multan had continued; more than 75 truckloads of medicines had been supplied to the affected districts so far.
About 893 medical teams from the department provided medical treatment to over one million patients in the flood affected areas, while 845 medical camps were working to provide medical assistance.
They said that the anti-rabies vaccine was administered to 940 dog-bite victims and the anti-venom vaccine provided to 385 victims of snake-bite. Incidence of skin disease was very high; 381,639 such patients had been provided treatment so far.
Cases of respiratory tract infection (RTI) were lower than those of skin disease; 255,079 RTI patients were provided medical treatment. Similarly, 193,089 gastroenteritis patients have been provided treatment by the department’s medical staff, they added.
The department has issued orders for the purchase of 40 new ambulances, at a cost of Rs80 million.
New ambulances would be provided within the next three weeks. Mobile health service would be continued to those areas where Basic Health Units and Rural Health Centres were non-functional;these services would continue till those centers could be made functional. A large number of drips and water purification tablets have also been sent to flood-hit areas to protect children and the elderly in particular from dehydration and to ensure the provision of safe drinking water to the affected.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 9th, 2010.