A health worker sprays larvicide on a marshy patch in Bokaro on Friday. Picture by Pankaj Singh
Sixty-one cases and three deaths in three months in one hospital alone have had the Bokaro district administration and steel plant authorities scrambling to contain the dengue menace.
Over the months of August, September and October, Bokaro General Hospital admitted 61 patients suffering from the vector-borne disease. While 53 were cured, three patients died and four are still undergoing treatment.
Along with a massive awareness drive, the district administration has taken up spraying of larvicide in waterlogging-prone areas in a big way.
Ten teams comprising five health workers each have been constituted to spread awareness around the district. The teams go from door to door telling people about the dos and don’ts to fight the spread of dengue.
“Handbills listing precautionary steps to be taken are also being offered to each household,” said Bokaro district civil surgeon S.N. Tewary, adding that workshops had also been organised to generate awareness about the disease.
“As stagnant water aids breeding of aedes ageypti mosquitoes, we are concentrating on spraying larvicide and bleaching power to control the disease,” said Tewary.
Notably, a joint meeting of the district health department and Bokaro district board took place ahead of Durga Puja during which a strategy to tackle the spread of the disease was discussed.
Meanwhile, the civil surgeon has also written to all private clinics, nursing homes and hospitals across the district, asking them to report the number of dengue cases they have treated on a monthly basis in order to understand the extent of the spread of the disease.
“We have ELISA kits for detection of dengue at Chas Sub Divisional Hospital and Bokaro General Hospital,” Tewari informed.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Bokaro Steel Limited’s chief of communication Sanjay Tewary said the steel plant authorities were doing everything possible to prevent water accumulation in areas under their control. Spraying of larvicide was also being carried out through the steel major’s public health department.
“A special task force headed by neurophysician S.N. Pradhan has been constituted at Bokaro General Hospital to look after dengue cases,” said the civil surgeon, adding that though a special ward had not been constituted, the hospital was fully equipped to treat all cases.
“Many of 57 cases admitted at Bokaro General Hospital were from outside the district, including Dhanbad, and many were from metros,” he said.
He added that over and above adequate number of testing kits, the hospital was also equipped to carry out blood transfusions on those who needed it.