Dengue count in Capital at 14,000 but hospital beds empty

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Oct 26, 2015 23:56 IST
An empty dengue ward at a hospital in New Delhi. (Saumya Khandelwal/HT Photo)

The total number of dengue cases in the city has gone up to 14,246 with the addition of 1,715 new cases during the week ending October 24, says data released by municipal corporations of Delhi on Monday.

Of the 1,715 new cases, 639 were added in just two days.

This dengue season peaked during the fourth week of September when 2,191 cases were recorded by the civic bodies in a single week. The figures released by the civic body have been rising at a steady pace by around 1,600-1,800 cases every week.

However, dengue wards in city hospitals are being shut down because there aren’t enough patients. “There has been a drastic decline. The cases have almost vanished. Normal functioning has resumed, and the extra beds provided for dengue cases have been withdrawn,” said Dr AK Rai, medical superintendent of Safdarjung hospital.

“There are hardly any cases now. Even the patients, who come to the fever clinic, do not have dengue. We see only one or two cases sometimes. The special clinic the hospital had started will run till October 30, then, it will be closed because the rush has subsided,” said Dr Savita Babbar, medical superintendent of Deen Dayal Upadhayay hospital.

“The cases have gone down to single digits in our hospitals,” said Dr SK Sharma, in-charge of the fever clinic at Lok Nayak Hospital, which had made available 250 beds for dengue patients during the peak season. The fever clinics and the wards have been discontinued and the hospital has resumed normal functioning.

Backlog cases getting verified now is the mystery behind the MCD’s inflated numbers.

“We are still receiving case files of dengue patients from several hospitals, which have to be verified by a committee. There are still some backlog cases, which will get added to the data, but, the number of new cases is decreasing,” said north and east Delhi civic body spokesperson Yogendra Maan, adding that the number of deaths might also go up as the backlog cases get vetted.

For the past two weeks, the number of deaths recorded by the corporations has remained at 32. An unofficial count by HT, however, pegs the figure at 51, accounting for the cases being confirmed by individual hospitals.

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