Majority of child deaths in UP's Firozabad 'due to dengue', says Centre
- The central team of experts included officials of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP).
The Centre on Monday wrote a letter to the principal secretary (health) in Uttar Pradesh amid the dengue outbreak in Firozabad district. In the letter, Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan also suggested containment measures as he confirmed that a team of experts have found that a majority of cases of viral fever and deaths among children in Firozabad are due to dengue, a few cases of scrub typhus and leptospirosis.
The central team of experts included officials of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP).
Under the recommended measures, Bhushan asked the district administration to screen all patients with fever for dengue, malaria, scrub typhus and leptospirosis. The senior official also asked the administration to "strengthen ELISA based testing facilities."
"Activities related to fever survey, vector control and fever camps to continue as per micro plan submitted by the central team," the health secretary also wrote in the letter.
Meanwhile, the NCDC deputed two officials in the district for the next 14 days to assist the district administration in strengthening its outbreak response.
This comes as the western part of Uttar Pradesh is battling a major outbreak of dengue. Firozabad and Mathura are the worst-affected districts in the region where more than 100 cases have been reported in the past two weeks. The viral disease has claimed 51 lives so far, most of them being children.
The Firozabad district administration is releasing about 25,000 fish that eat larvae of dengue-breeding mosquitoes in ponds to check the spread of the disease, news agency PTI reported quoting a senior district official.
The fishes, generically known as Gambusia, are reportedly being released in ponds in urban as well as rural areas of the district.
Meanwhile, district magistrate Chandra Vijay Singh directed the health and municipal corporation officials to conduct a door-to-door survey to drain out stagnant water from coolers, pots and other utensils.
What the Union health secretary suggested:
1) Surveillance to be strengthened with the implementation of Integrated Health Information Platform in the district in coordination with Central Surveillance Unit, Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme, NCDC.
2) Entomological activities to be strengthened and continued as per standard guidelines and standard operating protocols of the NVBDCP.
3) Isolation beds and admission facilities in the district hospital of Firozabad and neighbouring districts to be augmented.
4) He also asked the administration to organise a short reorientation of all doctors at primary health centres, community health centres and district hospital-cum-medical college of Firozabad and neighbouring districts on recent guidelines for the management of dengue, scrub typhus and leptospirosis.