65,000 dengue patients countrywide; 200 deaths

Published : 8:54 am  June 21, 2017 | No comments so far |  |  (183) reads | 

By Sandun A Jayasekera
The number of dengue patients countrywide has risen to 65,000 by yesterday with more than 200 deaths while 42.62% of the dengue cases were reported from the Western Province.   

 

“This situation warrants the eradicating of mosquito breeding sites while it is important to seek medical attention in the event of fever if it persists for three days,”   the Government Epidemiology Unit (GEU) said.

Meanwhile, Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne said the Health Ministry was studying the possibility of importing a stock of new bacteria developed in Australia for dengue control.   


He said laboratory tests conducted in Australia have found that a common bacteria known as Wolbachia stops the virus from replicating inside the mosquitoes that transmit the disease and though the bacteria were common among insects; they did not infect the mosquito species Aedesaegypti, a major carrier of dengue. 


The aim is to reduce infections in humans by getting Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes to mate and pass the bacterium to future generations. If the method works, vast numbers of wild mosquitoes will eventually carry Wolbachia and thus be unable to transmit dengue.   


This method has been successfully used already in Indonesia and Vietnam.    


The Government Epidemiology Unit has identified Kolonnawa, Dehiwala, Colombo Municipal Council limits, Kaduwela, Maharagama and Boralegamuwa as dengue-prone areas in the Colombo District and special fumigation programmes will be carried out in those areas.   
The hospitals in the Colombo District, particularly the Colombo National Hospital, Lady Ridgeway Hospital in Borella, IDH Fever Hospital and Kalubowila Teaching Hospital will be kept open round the clock to treat dengue patients.