Shahir Pal (second from left) takes a look at one of the posters at sadar hospital in Khasmahal on Monday. (Bhola Prasad)
East Singhbhum district health department is working on new ways to take the sting out of mosquitoes.
Armed with 30 6x4ft hoardings that it got on Monday, the the department will start a war against the spread of vector-borne diseases in Jamshedpur and its outskirts from Tuesday.
The hoardings, which are a part of the outdoor awareness campaign, will be put up at strategic locations within the steel city and in different blocks of the district.
A few locations that have been finalised include Tatanagar railway station, MGM hospital roundabout, Sitaramdera inter-state bus terminus, Sakchi roundabout, district collectorate and sadar hospital.
Informing people about the symptoms of dengue such as high fever and body ache, the hoardings will also suggest simple steps to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes that carry the virus.
To begin with, the district health department has printed the hoardings in Hindi, but will soon come up with its Santhali versions for maximum impact of the campaign.
“We will carry out awareness campaigns in Hindi and Santhali to reach out to maximum number of people. We will start putting up the billboards from tomorrow (Tuesday) at places that have high visibility,” said district civil surgeon Jagat Bhusan Prasad.
The move assumes significance in the city, which has so far reported one confirmed case of dengue and 17 that of Japanese encephalitis till Monday, according to data procured from the district health department.
The spurt in number of Japanese encephalitis cases has prompted the department to put up hoardings particularly on the disease.
“The first bunch of hoardings will have information on dengue. We feel there is need for a similar drive against Japanese encephalitis. However, the symptoms and preventive steps for the two are more or less similar,” East Singhbhum integrated diseases surveillance programme (IDSP) officer Shahir Paul told The Telegraph.
One of the most trusted means of publicity, hoardings, however, were never used by IDSP till now as a medium to spread awareness about vector-borne diseases.
Till date, the integrated diseases unit was engaged in only monitoring spraying of anti-larvicidal, bleaching powder and DDT besides encouraging people to destroy potential waterlogging points.