J&K hastens preparedness as dengue outbreak rages in Delhi

6 cases in Kashmir, 15 in Jammu detected this season
Representational Image
Representational Image File/ GK

Srinagar: A series of meetings and intensified preparedness arrangements are being put in place in J&K as dengue cases rise in neighboring states including Delhi.

The Health Department said that the situation in J&K was ‘calm’ at the moment but cases were expected to rise post monsoon.

Talking to Greater Kashmir, State Surveillance Officer Jammu, Dr Harjeet Rai said that earlier this week two wards with a combined capacity of 50 beds were reserved for dengue patients at Government Medical College (GMC) Jammu for better management of cases when the need arises.

He said that in addition blood component labs had been instructed to keep a stock of blood platelets and dengue testing labs had also been directed to ramp up their capacity.

“We have issued an awareness campaign and have directed people to utilise 108 ambulance services for seeking medical attention for sick cases,” Dr Rai said.

He said that referral linkages had been put in place to ensure that cases from far off places were managed well and there was no mortality due to dengue.

“We are working on dengue prevention as well as dengue management together with all the departments that have a role,” Dr Rai said.

“While Kashmir climate is unfavourable for the dengue-causing Aedes mosquito’s survival, and dengue as such was not a threat to the population here, dengue fever has been reported from the region in people with travel history,” he said.

Dr Rai said that Jammu division on the other hand had borne the brunt of dengue fever in the past.

He said that this season 15 cases had been diagnosed in the Jammu division and six in Kashmir division.

“Those who were diagnosed to have dengue in Kashmir had travel history,” Dr Rai said.

Kashmir is witnessing a high traffic of travellers and health authorities have ramped up the preparedness. A testing lab has been put in place at JLNM Hospital Srinagar.

This year, preparedness measures have been started early in J&K, owing to the raging cases of dengue in Delhi and other neighboring states. Meetings of health officials and municipal bodies have been held over the past week. The peak of dengue cases is witnessed in September in J&K. Last year, J&K had reported nearly 3500 cases of dengue.

Delhi’s reported dengue infections reached the highest level in the past 5 years. The capital city has reported a staggering rise in dengue cases, sounding an alarm for residents and healthcare facilities.

The Aedes mosquito, responsible for transmitting the virus, thrives during the monsoon season due to stagnant water, making preventive measures crucial during this time.

A senior health official said, “We are witnessing a concerning increase in dengue cases this year. It is imperative for the public to be vigilant and take necessary precautions to protect themselves from mosquito bites.”

He said that larvicides were being sprayed at places where there was a possibility of breeding of mosquitoes.

“Simultaneously, the J&K government has enforced strict waste management practices to eradicate potential breeding sites,” the health official said.

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