Pune plagued by chikungunya, records highest number of positive cases in State
Cases of chikungunya have registered a sharp increase in numbers across the city in the last two to three years, with 90 per cent of the total chikungunya cases registered in the state being reported from Pune.
This also puts Pune at the number one position in the state with maximum chikungunya cases registered in the last two years.
Speaking about chikungunya, Dr MS Diggikar, joint director (health), Maharashtra, said, “It has been observed that since the past two years, and even in the past three months, cases of chikungunya have been maximum in Pune followed by Mumbai. Chikungunya is caused in humans by the bite of an infected female Aedes species mosquito.”
Dr Diggikar said that as per statistics available from across the state, in 2016, Pune recorded 2,459 cases of chikungunya in 2016 followed by 951 in 2017 and 12 have been registered in 2018, up to April 3.
“Compared to Pune, in 2016, Mumbai which ranked second in state for number of chikungunya cases, registered 73 cases. In 2017, Mumbai registered 12 cases, while in the past three months, no case has been registered in Pune,” added Dr Diggikar.
He stated that after analysing these statistics, it becomes clear that the number of cases registered in Pune have always been very high. According to him, the major reason for rise in number of chikungunya cases is its growing awareness due to which more and more people are visiting hospitals even with minor symptoms.
Dr Vaishali Jadhav from Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) health department said that understanding the growing concern about chikungunya cases, the PMC health department has taken various steps to keep this virus in check.
“We undertake regular surveys after a case gets registered. We basically check for potential breeding grounds and destroy them using sprays and other medicines. Awareness about the same is also being increased amongst residents,” said Jadhav.
According to Dr Sudhir Patsute, from Naidu Hospital in Pune, climatic conditions the city are more conducive to the virus. Speaking about chikungunya, Dr Patsute said, “Chikungunya is a vector-borne disease and the average temperature of Pune is conducive to the virus that causes it. The mosquitoes need seven days to breed in stagnant water which can be accumulated in any waste lying around and so we see a spike in cases immediately after the first rain,” said Patsute.