Dengue scare: Civic agency makes strategy to combat mosquitoes

Capital divided into three regions, residents advised to take precautionary measures.


Express August 25, 2011

ISLAMABAD:


The monsoon deluges, bring with them abundance of seasonal diseases -- dengue being one of the most dangerous among these. The pools of stagnant water that can be found around the city after every rainfall provide breeding grounds for mosquitoes which then become the carriers and dispensers of dengue virus.


As dengue cases have started surfacing from other parts of the country, Capital Development Authority (CDA) has started formulating strategies to counter its spread. For effective surveillance and control, the civic agency has divided the capital city into the three regions. Region one covers katchi abadis (slum dwellings adjacent to drains and streams), region two covers the green areas and attached drains and the third one comprises government accommodation, mosques, imambargahs, churches and attached residential areas.

A press release issued by CDA public relations directorate stated that the chairman of the civic agency has issued instructions to the Directorate of Health Services to ensure the controlling of the disease. The directorate has also been asked to increase its efforts in curbing the spread of dengue virus.

The civic agency has urged the people to take precautionary measures, including installing wire gauze on the doors and windows, using mosquito nets when sleeping outside, covering the pits of stagnant water around houses, destroying the old tyres and other vessels that store water. The CDA chairman through the press statement said that there is no effective vaccine for the disease and prevention is the only tool to control it. He urged the residents of katchi abadis to take preventive medicines against malaria as well.

(Read: Dengue threat looms)

Dengue fever is self-limiting disease with almost 100% recovery, but its advanced stages i.e., dengue hemorrhagic and dengue shock syndrome could be dangerous. Dengue fever is caused by mosquito “Aedes agypti”. This specific mosquito breeds in clean water.

The lifespan of the species is seven days. The dengue fever can be controlled through precautionary measures like change of water in water tank, bottles, bath tubs, flower pots etc., once in a week.

Larvicides are being added in drains, streams and spray/ fogging is being done along the banks of streams. In addition, breeding are being collected from drains, streams to identify the species, CDA spokesperson said. “Close liaison has been established with hospitals and National Institute of Health (NIH) to work in coordination,” he said.

He said that to make aware the public regarding dengue fever and its precautions, banners have been displayed at all public places and pamphlets are being distributed among public

Published in The Express Tribune, August 25th, 2011.

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