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Sunday, 8 February 2015

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More public support sought to check dengue outbreak

Epidemiology Chief Dr. Paba Pallihawardana has called for more public support again to check the spread of dengue as the Health Ministry is ready to meet any further outbreak that could lead to a dengue epidemic.

"The weather since November last year with intermittent rains have resulted in a sudden spike in the number of dengue cases due to water collecting islandwide that provides the ideal breeding grounds for the dengue carrying vector. The increasing trend usually occurs during the monsoons and we appeal to the public to clean their premises and keep them free of mosquito breeding sites", she told the Sunday Observer.

Around 75 government hospitals were fully equipped to handle any emergency situation if there is a dengue outbreak of epidemic proportions increasing the number of patients further. Paediatric units have been set up in every state hospital islandwide and they are fully equipped for any emergency", she said.

Circulars have been sent to all Regional Directors on the precautions that need to be taken to avoid patient-patient infection in hospitals and for hospital premises to be kept free of garbage.

"We have also empowered our Public Health Inspectors to inspect all buildings and residences for dengue breeding sites. Spot fines will be levied on offenders and legal action will be initiated if necessary", she said.

On going anti-mosquito programs such as fogging and spraying would continue throughout the year.

Over 5,370 cases had been reported last month and 10 deaths with 1,421 cases from the Colombo district in the Western Province, she said.

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