In 1 year, dengue deaths across Mumbai increase from 7 to 17
The state health department revealed that number of dengue-related deaths in 2017 was the highest in the past four years.mumbai Updated: Jan 24, 2018 09:58 IST
Although fewer dengue cases were reported across Mumbai last year, in comparison to 2016, statistics available with the state health department revealed that number of dengue-related deaths in 2017 was the highest in the past four years. Seventeen people died of dengue last year, as compared to seven in 2016.
Dengue is a viral infection caused by the bite of an Aedes Aegypti mosquito, which is already infected with the virus. The cases usually surge during monsoon after rainwater accumulates and provides ample breeding spots for the mosquito.
While the number patients who tested positive for dengue increased between 2014 and 2016, cases dropped by 3.8% in 2017.
Dr Padmaja Keskar, municipal executive health officer, said the reason behind the increase in dengue cases was owing to the improved ability of the civic body to record dengue-related deaths.
“This year, we reported all the suspected dengue deaths and also included data from private hospitals,” she said.
While a decline in the number of dengue cases was observed across Mumbai, the cases increased for the rest of Maharashtra. Last year, 7,824 cases were reported across Maharashtra, as compared to 6,792 in 2016. An official from the epidemiology department said the numbers increased owing to better surveillance.
“This year, all the patients who reported dengue-like symptoms so far were kept under observation and confirmatory tests were performed,” the official added.
Dr Anita Mathew, infectious disease specialist, Lokmanya Tilak Municipal General Hospital, Sion, said timely diagnosis and treatment are crucial to reduce dengue-related deaths.
“This year, a lot of the dengue deaths resulted from condictions such as hypertension and diabetes. These patients fall in the vulnerable group and need to be monitored closely,” she said.
Another official from the civic body’s health department cautioned that people in residential areas must not allow accumulation of water in their areas.
“Over the years, we have observed that dengue cases are recoded round the years because a lot of mosquito breeding happens indoors. This happens in places such as water buckets or flower pots,” he said.