Corporators say BMC dengue control efforts lack bite
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With the city witnessing a sharp rise in dengue cases, corporators are questioning civic body measures to curb the disease. At a statutory standing committee meeting on Thursday, corporators raised a hue and cry. They said civic hospitals were ill-equipped.
"There have been instances in the past where dengue patients have been shifted from civic hospitals and asked to go to private hospitals, due to lack of availability of platelets. However, not every one can afford treatment in private hospitals which is why we need to ensure the BMC-run hospitals are well stocked with platelets. In addition, the civic body run labs must also be sufficiently equipped with diagnostic equipment, as tests in private labs are not economically viable for the common man," said corporator Anuradha Pednekar.
While the city saw a drop in malaria cases this year, there has been more than a 50 per rise in dengue cases. There have been close to 600 cases recorded this year by the BMC. However, these have been recorded from civic hospitals alone. Admitting that there are challenges in tackling the spurt in dengue cases, BMC executive health officer, Dr Arun Bamne said, "Dengue is not a notifiable disease, hence we had to request private labs to inform us of positive cases. Also, since malaria and dengue have similar symptoms, some doctors gave presumptive treatment for malaria, which has further compounded the problems."
The 'E' ward of Byculla saw 126 dengue cases — the maximum in the city. A large number of cases have been witnessed in the Metro railway construction sites. "We have already started fumigation and treating construction areas with larvacide. We have also approached the concerned managers of the construction sites to make sure there is no stagnant water which will become breeding grounds for mosquitoes," Bamne added.
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