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AIIMS campus witnesses 15 dengue cases

Authorities have admitted that the situation was alarming and necessary steps are being taken to control it.

india Updated: Oct 07, 2006 17:30 IST

After 15 people including doctors and students were tested positive for dengue at the premier All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), institute authorities admitted on Saturday that the situation was alarming and necessary directives were being issued to control it.

"A student is in the intensive care unit after being operated upon for a dengue-related problem. He is in a very critical condition and is on the life support system," said a top AIIMS official.

In last two weeks, over 20 cases of dengue have been reported from the AIIMS and a 17-year-old girl succumbed to the deadly fever earlier this week.

Out of the 20-odd cases, 15 have been reported from within the campus of the prestigious institute, including seven students and resident doctors.

"If doctors have caught dengue, that too in the AIIMS, then there is something wrong somewhere. It could be that our support staff are not doing their job properly," the official said.

The dengue virus is spread by the bite of female Aedes mosquitoes, primarily Aedes Aegypti, that breed in clean water collections.

A fresh directive was issued to all support staff to keep a close watch for any signs of such breeding grounds around hospital premises, the students' hostels and doctors' residences.

"Besides, we have also asked students and resident doctors to keep their water coolers clean," the official said, adding that the AIIMS will also ask the civic authorities to remove the garbage and stagnated water from near the boundary walls of the institute.

"The condition of the hostels is not that great. Some of the rooms do not get sunlight and the water in coolers is rarely changed regularly. As the doctors are too busy attending to patients and the support staff are not that alert, the mosquito breeding goes on unabated," said a resident doctor on the condition of anonymity.

He said the number of cases was really alarming and had created panic among hostel residents, most of whom were queuing up for a check-up.

The national capital in 2006 recorded over 400 cases of dengue fever - more than double the number reported in 2005.

According to health authorities in New Delhi, at least 10 people have died in the city of the deadly fever during 2006.

Moreover, authorities said next two months could see the disease spreading further.

Out of the 327 cases reported this year, 127 came to light only last week.