ISLAMABAD: As many as five patients from the federal capital have so far been tested positive for dengue fever after which Islamabad Capital Territory Health Department has launched an extensive larvae identification and elimination campaign along with social mobilisation drive in rural areas of the capital to avoid a possible outbreak of the infection.
Data collected by ‘The News’ on Saturday has revealed that of the five confirmed patients, three patients were reported from the same house from Islamabad’s urban area while the other two patients were also reported from urban area of the federal capital.
All these five patents were tested positive at Holy Family Hospital in Rawalpindi through NS1 test, said Additional District Health Officer at ICT Health Department Dr. Muhammad Najeeb Durrani while talking to ‘The News’ on Saturday.
He added the ICT rapid response teams have performed fumigation and insecticidal residual spray in the areas from where confirmed cases have been reported. The rapid response teams are performing fogging in the area of residence of a patient and IRS inside the patient’s house and 12 houses on each side of his residence, he said. Talking of the surveillance campaign, he said there are two types of teams working in the field, one comprising lady health workers for social mobilization and indoor surveillance and the other comprising sanitary and malaria inspectors along with sanitary patrols for outdoor surveillance. Additional Deputy Commissioner East Dr. Asif Rahim along with me is monitoring the campaign on daily basis to ensure effective working in the field, he said.
Today is the fifth day of the campaign under which the outdoor surveillance teams are visiting hotspots for elimination of breeding sites of mosquitoes and larvae of ‘aedes aegypti’ and ‘aedes albopictus’, the vectors that cause dengue fever, said Dr. Durrani. He said the teams of sanitary inspectors and malaria inspectors are working to eliminate active breeding sites for larvae of dengue fever vectors while treating stagnant water with Temephos granules.
Responding to a query, he said the surveillance teams have so far found larvae of dengue fever vector from 10 per cent of the total hotspots and premises so far visited by the teams.
He added that for outdoor surveillance, a total of 5000 hotspots have been listed of which as many as 2000 have been visited and treated to check growth of dengue fever vector. He said a total of 10 teams each for indoor and outdoor surveillance have been formed for carrying out activities in the field.
As many as 270 lady health workers under supervision of lady health supervisors have been paying door-to-door visits in their respective rural areas for indoor surveillance and social mobilization, he said. He added to date, 60 per cent of the total houses in rural areas have been visited by the LHWs. The LHWs’ visits have been planned for motivating community and to create awareness among the rural population to adopt preventive measures to save themselves from the bite of dengue mosquitoes and be vigilant to stop dengue mosquito to flourish or develop from larvae to adult mosquito inside their homes and around, he said.
He said the lady health workers are also convincing local population in rural areas of the federal capital to remove solid waste from inside and around their residences to avoid dengue fever outbreak. The teams of LHWs are removing all possible breeding sites inside homes mechanically, by hand and looking for any probable breeding sites inside homes like water coolers having water, old broken furniture, toys, lids, cans, pitchers and saucers, flower pots, utensils and all those items that may attract rain water.