ISLAMABAD: Health experts have warned of the potential threat of an outbreak of dengue if precautionary measures are not taken during heavy monsoon rainfall.
People coming to Pakistan from countries where dengue fever cases have already been reported could also become a means of disease’s spread, according to health experts. The biggest risk comes from countries like Saudi Arabia, especially after people return from Umrah, and from Malaysia. They stressed upon the need to create awareness among people to take all possible preventive and precautionary measures.
Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) focal person on dengue Dr Yaqoob Qureshi said there is a need to remove rainwater as soon as possible. He explained that if it stays at one place for more than two days then it provides favourable breeding ground for dengue mosquitoes.
“The best possible option to kill larva is proper and timely fogging, spraying and preventing dengue mosquito from finding favorable condition to breed,” he said.
He said the season of dengue fever is just around the corner and early prevention and precautionary measures could help avoid its possible outbreak in the country.
He said indoor surveillance is very important therefore people should not let water accumulate at junkyards, courtyard, flowerpots, and buckets inside homes. Even water flowing out from air-conditioners should be removed regularly, he said.
Dr Nasir Mehmood, Executive District Officer (Health) Rawalpindi district, Punjab said so far all cases of dengue fever reported in Rawalpindi were of people coming from abroad.
He said three people who tested positive for dengue came from Saudi Arabia, Malaysia and Karachi. Dr Mehmood said so far 640 people have tested positive for dengue fever in Karachi alone. People travelling from there to other cities pose a big threat to others.
“There is a need to take extra precautionary measures during Hajj season when people will be returning to Pakistan after performing Haj,” he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 18th, 2015.
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