Dengue cases spike in city’s up­scale colonies

Doc­tors say most of th­ese res­i­den­tial ar­eas con­tain parks, swim­ming pools and park­ing lots, which are con­ducive breed­ing grounds for mos­qui­toes and growth of lar­vae

Hindustan Times (Gurugram) - - Gurugram - Son­ali Verma son­ ■

Some of the most up­scale res­i­den­tial lo­cal­i­ties of the city have been af­fected by dengue this mon­soon sea­son.

Ac­cord­ing to data col­lected by the district health de­part­ment and the Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion of Gurugram(MCG), the high­est num­ber of sus­pected cases of the dengue haem­or­rhagic fever in Gurugram has been re­ported from DLF Phase-1 and Phase-2 re­spec­tively.

Of the to­tal 253 sus­pected cases of dengue re­ported in the district, DLF Phase-1 and Phase2 recorded 16 cases each.

They were closely fol­lowed by Sushant Lok 1, which has re­ported seven cases so far. Three other sus­pected cases were re­ported from DLF Phase-3 and South City 1 in Sec­tor 41.

The num­ber of con­firmed cases of dengue in the district stands at 21, of which two cases have been re­ported from DLF Phase 2 and one each from DLF Phase-1 and Phase-3.

The year’s first con­firmed dengue case was re­ported on July 19 from DLF-5, which houses some of the most high­end res­i­den­tial con­do­mini­ums in the city.

Dengue is a vec­tor-borne dis­ease caused by the bite of aedes ae­gypti mos­quito. A case of dengue can only be con­firmed by a spe­cialised blood test, called the IgM-based ELISA test, con­ducted by both pri­vate and gov­ern­ment hospi­tals.

As per the di­rec­tives from the state health de­part­ment, ev­ery pri­vate hospi­tal or clinic is re­quired to in­ti­mate the de­part­ment about any sus­pected case of dengue and send the blood sam­ple to the lab­o­ra­tory for test­ing. Once con­firmed, the re­sult is con­sid­ered pos­i­tive.

Blood test is im­por­tant since even false cases of dengue can ex­hibit com­mon symp­toms of the dis­ease, such as high fever, body ache, low platelet count and such­like. How­ever, many blood sam­ples of­ten show neg­a­tive re­sults.

Doc­tors are of the opin­ion that a place with a high den­sity of hu­man pop­u­la­tion, liv­ing in a cool and hu­mid en­vi­ron­ment, is per­fect for breed­ing of mos­qui­toes.

“Most of th­ese highly pop­u­lated, up­scale ar­eas in the city are home to con­do­mini­ums which of­ten have parks, swim­ming pools, foun­tains, park­ing lots within their premises. Such spa­ces are con­sid­ered ideal for the growth of lar­vae. There are also a lot of con­struc­tion work be­ing car­ried out in th­ese lo­cal­i­ties, and hence, peo­ple liv­ing nearby are at a high risk of get­ting in­fected,” said Dr Man­jeeta Das, in­ter­nal medicine spe­cial­ist, Columbia Asia Hospi­tal.

Gul­shan Rai Arora, civil sur­geon, Gurugram, said that the Aedes ae­gypti mos­quito — which causes both dengue and chikun­gunya — thrives in fresh, stag­nant water, which is of­ten found in abun­dance in such colonies.

“Peo­ple leave water in con­tain­ers, cool­ers, flower pots, which pro­vide the per­fect ground for breed­ing of mos­qui­toes,” he said, adding that peo­ple in th­ese lo­cal­i­ties should take proper care to keep their sur­round­ings clean.

In 2017, the high­est num­ber of cases of dengue was re­ported from Khandsa, Ashok Vi­har and Palam Vi­har, ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cials.

“Last year, the trend was a bit dif­fer­ent. Most cases were re­ported from ar­eas near the rail­way lines such as Ashok Vi­har and Palam Vi­har,” said Dr As­rud­din, chief med­i­cal of­fi­cer, MCG.

He added that a study on the types of mos­qui­toes found in dif­fer­ent ar­eas is cur­rently be­ing con­ducted.

Health de­part­ment of­fi­cials in­formed that they have is­sued show-cause no­tices to sev­eral hous­ing so­ci­eties or apart­ments found with mos­quito breed­ing sites on their premises. “Till date, 940 no­tices have been is­sued. At least 300 of th­ese were is­sued to up­scale apart­ments,” said Dr Pradeep Ku­mar, district malaria of­fi­cer.

Ku­mar added that health staff found dengue larva in un­cov­ered water stor­age bar­rels, flower pots and air con­di­tion­ers, and took anti-lar­val mea­sures. “How­ever, health work­ers are of­ten met with re­sis­tance from res­i­dents of apart­ments and bun­ga­lows, when they visit their premises for in­spec­tion,” he said.

Health of­fi­cials also said they have re­ceived mul­ti­ple re­quests for fog­ging from res­i­dents of th­ese ar­eas. “Res­i­dents of ar­eas such as DLF phases 1 and 2 call the MCG to re­quest fog­ging near their homes, just to make sure they are safe,” said the chief med­i­cal of­fi­cer, As­rud­din.

Sud­hir Sachdeva, mem­ber, col­legium of Sushant Lok res­i­dents’ wel­fare as­so­ci­a­tion(RWA), said that the so­ci­ety has taken steps to en­sure the in­fec­tion is con­tained as much as pos­si­ble.

“There have been aware­ness drives by the RWA. We have asked peo­ple to get cool­ers and air-con­di­tion­ers in­spected, so that ram­pant breed­ing of mos­qui­toes can be con­trolled,” he said.

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