Dengue cases show a spike, October is the most vulnerable month
While Delhi and many other states including Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal have seen a sudden spurt in dengue cases in the last couple of days, government data showed that the number of dengue cases has recorded a significant rise in the last few years.
Moreover, states like Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, and Rajasthan witnessed the maximum number of cases of dengue in 2021 among all the states.
Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, and Rajasthan recorded 29750, 23389, and 20749 dengue cases respectively during 2021. Delhi also recorded a significantly higher number of cases at 13089 during the same year. A total of 1.93 lakh cases were reported from all across the country in 2021.
Government data revealed that 2020 had witnessed a remarkably lower number of 44,585 cases probably due to the Covid-related restrictions in most parts of India as against 1.57 lakh cases in 2019.
This year, a considerable number of dengue cases have been reported from Delhi and many cities of Uttar Pradesh. As per reports, UP has so far registered over 2,200 dengue cases, with the state capital Lucknow reporting over 300 cases. Similarly, Delhi has also recorded nearly 1000 cases.
Officials said that October can be the most vulnerable period for the spread of dengue in Delhi and recent spells of rain have only added to the woes. Recently, the Delhi government asked hospitals to reserve 10-15 per cent beds for patients of vector-borne diseases.
Government data showed that 346 deaths were reported across the country due to dengue in 2021 as against 56 deaths in 2020 and 166 deaths in 2019.
The central government intervenes whenever there is a sudden rise in dengue cases. Reports said that a six-member team has been sent to Uttar Pradesh very recently by the Union Health Ministry to collaborate with the state authorities in taking public health measures for dengue management in the districts of Firozabad, Agra and Etawah.
The National Centre for Vector Borne Diseases Control (NCVBDC) is the nodal agency under the umbrella of the National Health Mission for Vector Borne Diseases (including dengue) prevention and control in the country.
The NCVBDC has issued multiple advisories to the States/UTs for detection and control of outbreaks, preparedness and capacity building to take effective measures for vector control, involvement of the non-health sector, ensuring availability of drugs, diagnostics, insecticides, equipment and to fill up the vacant positions of entomologists.
Moreover, training has been imparted to doctors on case management and to entomologists on integrated vector control at the central and state level.
As per a parliament reply on August 2, 2022, free diagnostic facilities through 769 Sentinel Surveillance Hospitals and 17 Apex Referral Laboratories have been made functional. 1.92 lakh IgM tests have been provided by the Centre.
It said that the NCVBDC provides technical guidelines for prevention, control, and management of dengue cases in States/UTs. Under the National Health Mission, budgetary support is provided to States/UTs for dengue control activities including dengue case management, vector control activities (provision of domestic breeding checkers, insecticide, fogging machines etc.), training support, awareness activities etc.