A sudden increase in the number patients suffering from jaundice has been reported from different areas of Doda district, even as experts called for consumption of boiled water and hygienic food items.
A senior doctor told Greater Kashmir that hospitals in the district are witnessing inflow of a large number of patients suffering from jaundice, saying the disease mostly spreads through water and unhygienic food practices.
Dr Zia Shoket Mughal, said that one of the causes of the disease is the use of contaminated water and unhygienic food items. The uncovered food items and sweets in the markets add to this disease, he said.
Representatives of the civil society have voiced serious concern over the emerging situation and alleged that the authorities of Public Health Engineering department Doda are least concerned about the grave situation.
They demanded that the PHE authorities should ensure cleaning of all the water reservoirs and purification of drinking water chemically as well as physically so that the disease is controlled.
A civil society activist said that the food inspectors should conduct frequent checking of markets and shops both in urban and rural areas and ensure that hygienic food items are served to the customers by these businessmen. He further said that coordinated efforts are required to control the spread of this "chronic ailment".
"The situation in Doda has become alarming. People are scared as the number of patients goes on increasing day by day", said a group of locals.
When contacted, Chief Medical Officer Doda, said that though the exact number of patients suffering from this ailment is not available, "it is true that these days such cases are on rise".
He further said that the health department is taking all possible measures to aware the masses about prevention from spread of the disease. "Recently we held a meeting with the Deputy commissioner Doda and discussed the strategy to control the disease. The public in general has been informed through public address system to take the precautions and drink boiled water so as to prevent themselves from this disease", he added.