The Health Ministry of India has issued an alert, especially directed towards endemic states including Delhi and West Bengal of increase in dengue and chikungunya cases over next two months, particularly during the month of September. The health ministry has asked states to take all preventive measures and be prepared to tackle any outbreak.
The capital Delhi has been experiencing a sudden rise in both cases of dengue and chikungunya last week and the government is holding regular meeting including state representatives in order to maintain the latest updated information and ensure preparedness and a tight control on stagnant water which are a breeding ground for mosquitoes.
According to official information, an estimated 41 percent of mosquitoes breed in plastic containers and drums, which a lot are found on construction sites.
In terms of the number of cases already reported as of the 21st of August, the numbers have increased to 24’892 cases from 18’417 recorded at the same time last year. Cases in Delhi have become concerning as there has been a 57 percent increase in cases of dengue. The capital recorded 311 cases from January 1st till August 20th with an additional 176 new cases reported just last week.
Chikungunya cases in Delhi have increased even more, with 20 cases reported from the beginning of the year till the 21st of August with an additional 432 cases reported in the last week only. Chikungunya is a viral disease transmitted by the Aedes type mosquito, the same vector responsible for the spread of dengue.
The private New Delhi weather forecaster Skymet predicted that the country was expected to see its highest level of rainfall from the monsoons since 1994 which is positive in terms of agriculture production and water shortages but detrimental in the number of mosquito’s transmitted pathogens.