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Dengue cases spike in Gurugram’s upscale colonies

According to data collected by the district health department and the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram, the highest number of suspected cases of the dengue fever has been reported from DLF Phase-1 and Phase-2

gurgaon Updated: Sep 16, 2018 04:53 IST
Sonali Verma
Sonali Verma
Hindustan Times, Gurugran
Dengue,Gurugram,Gurgaon
A view of Hindu Rao Hospital's dengue ward. (HT File Photo)

Some of the most upscale residential localities of the city have been affected by dengue this monsoon season.

According to data collected by the district health department and the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram(MCG), the highest number of suspected cases of the dengue haemorrhagic fever in Gurugram has been reported from DLF Phase-1 and Phase-2 respectively.

Of the total 253 suspected cases of dengue reported in the district, DLF Phase-1 and Phase- 2 recorded 16 cases each.

They were closely followed by Sushant Lok 1, which has reported seven cases so far. Three other suspected cases were reported from DLF Phase-3 and South City 1 in Sector 41.

The number of confirmed cases of dengue in the district stands at 21, of which two cases have been reported from DLF Phase 2 and one each from DLF Phase-1 and Phase-3.

The year’s first confirmed dengue case was reported on July 19 from DLF-5, which houses some of the most high-end residential condominiums in the city.

Dengue is a vector-borne disease caused by the bite of aedes aegypti mosquito. A case of dengue can only be confirmed by a specialised blood test, called the IgM-based ELISA test, conducted by both private and government hospitals.

As per the directives from the state health department, every private hospital or clinic is required to intimate the department about any suspected case of dengue and send the blood sample to the laboratory for testing. Once confirmed, the result is considered positive.

Blood test is important since even false cases of dengue can exhibit common symptoms of the disease, such as high fever, body ache, low platelet count and suchlike. However, many blood samples often show negative results.

Doctors are of the opinion that a place with a high density of human population, living in a cool and humid environment, is perfect for breeding of mosquitoes.

“Most of these highly populated, upscale areas in the city are home to condominiums which often have parks, swimming pools, fountains, parking lots within their premises. Such spaces are considered ideal for the growth of larvae. There are also a lot of construction work being carried out in these localities, and hence, people living nearby are at a high risk of getting infected,” said Dr Manjeeta Das, internal medicine specialist, Columbia Asia Hospital.

Gulshan Rai Arora, civil surgeon, Gurugram, said that the Aedes aegypti mosquito — which causes both dengue and chikungunya — thrives in fresh, stagnant water, which is often found in abundance in such colonies.

“People leave water in containers, coolers, flower pots, which provide the perfect ground for breeding of mosquitoes,” he said, adding that people in these localities should take proper care to keep their surroundings clean.

In 2017, the highest number of cases of dengue was reported from Khandsa, Ashok Vihar and Palam Vihar, according to officials.

“Last year, the trend was a bit different. Most cases were reported from areas near the railway lines such as Ashok Vihar and Palam Vihar,” said Dr Asruddin, chief medical officer, MCG.

He added that a study on the types of mosquitoes found in different areas is currently being conducted.

Health department officials informed that they have issued show-cause notices to several housing societies or apartments found with mosquito breeding sites on their premises. “Till date, 940 notices have been issued. At least 300 of these were issued to upscale apartments,” said Dr Pradeep Kumar, district malaria officer.

Kumar added that health staff found dengue larva in uncovered water storage barrels, flower pots and air conditioners, and took anti-larval measures. “However, health workers are often met with resistance from residents of apartments and bungalows, when they visit their premises for inspection,” he said.

Health officials also said they have received multiple requests for fogging from residents of these areas. “Residents of areas such as DLF phases 1 and 2 call the MCG to request fogging near their homes, just to make sure they are safe,” said the chief medical officer, Asruddin.

Sudhir Sachdeva, member, collegium of Sushant Lok residents’ welfare association(RWA), said that the society has taken steps to ensure the infection is contained as much as possible.

“There have been awareness drives by the RWA. We have asked people to get coolers and air-conditioners inspected, so that rampant breeding of mosquitoes can be controlled,” he said.

First Published: Sep 16, 2018 04:53 IST