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December 1, 2019

Death toll rises to 42 as two more patients fall prey to dengue in Karachi


December 1, 2019

The dengue fever outbreak that has gripped Karachi for the last several months seems far from over as two more persons fell prey to the mosquito-borne illness in Karachi on Saturday, officials said.

Dengue Prevention and Control Program officials said two persons, a 48-year-old woman and a three-month-old baby, died due to complications of the vector-borne illness at a private hospital.

“A 48-year-old woman from the North Nazimabad area of the city, who was under treatment at a private hospital on Stadium Road, died due to dengue fever and its complications,” an official of the dengue prevention and control program official said.

Similarly, the official said, a three-month old child from Gulshan-e-Malir also succumbed to multi-organ failure and dengue shock at the same hospital. The names of the victims were not released immediately.

The official said that with the latest deaths, the toll due to dengue had risen to 44, including 42 deaths in Karachi, and added that during last 24 hours, around 101 patients had been admitted to different hospitals.

Experts urged the people to adopt precautionary measures and prevent themselves and their children from the mosquito-borne illness, which was out of control at the moment in Karachi.

“What we need to see is how to protect ourselves now and in the future. We know that it’s like a viral infection and we now need to concentrate on fumigation cleanliness,” said Dr Seemin Jamali, the executive director of Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre.

On Wednesday, a woman had died of dengue. She was a resident of Nazimabad, according to a health official.

“Maryam, 26, tested positive for dengue fever and subsequently admitted to the Dr Ziauddin Hospital for treatment a couple of days ago. Unfortunately, she could not be saved,” an official of the Sindh Dengue Prevention and Control Programme had told The News.

While the provincial government’s tall claims to curb dengue hemorrhagic fever fall flat as the virus has virtually become an epidemic in the metropolitan, Sindh health minister Dr Azra Pechuho appears to be counting on a change of weather.

"Dengue outbreak will end when the weather will turn cold,” the health minister said on Wednesday while talking to journalists on the sidelines of a ceremony. She also had a message for the citizens: “Pray that the weather turns cold soon.”

Karachi Commissioner Iftikhar Shallwani had vowed earlier this week to bring the cases of dengue under control in a week. According to a press statement from the commissioner office, cases of dengue have fallen from 300 to 150 on a daily basis. He had requested non-governmental organisations to play their role in spreading awareness about dengue. “Even after combating dengue, the awareness campaigns should continue across the city.”

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