- Compared to June, number of patients rose by more than 4 times in 24 days of July
- About 99% of patients are from the capital
- Most of the patients in Dhaka are from Dhaka south
- 1,202 patients have been admitted to hospitals this month
The number of dengue patients admitted to hospitals in the country has been increasing day by day, setting up a new record every day.
Compared to the month of June, the number of dengue patients has increased by more than four times in 24 days of the current month.
About 99% of the dengue patients are from the capital and most of them are from Dhaka South City Corporation.
The number of dengue-affected children admitted to the hospital is also increasing alarmingly.
Health experts say dengue has taken a worrying turn all of a sudden and the number of deaths due to dengue will increase several times if coordinated control measures are not taken immediately.
According to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), 104 dengue patients were admitted to various hospitals in Dhaka in the 24 hours till 8am on Saturday, the highest in a single day in this year.
The number of dengue patients admitted to different hospitals of the country in this year is 1,574. Among them, 1,202 people were infected in this month.
At present, out of the 422 patients admitted to different hospitals across the country, 419 are from Dhaka. Of the remaining three, two are from Dhaka division and one is from Mymensingh division.
The highest number of 61 patients has been admitted to Ad-Din Medical College Hospital in Dhaka. Besides, among the notable hospitals in Dhaka, 59 dengue patients are admitted at SSMC and Mitford Hospital, 44 at Islami Bank Central Hospital, 35 to Central Hospital, 23 at Dhaka Shishu Hospital, 20 at Holy Family Red Crescent Hospital and 20 at Square Hospital.
According to the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR), from 1 January to 24 July this year, 1,574 people have been admitted to hospitals across the country due to dengue. Among them, 1149 people returned home after treatment. So far, three people have died of dengue.
According to the DGHS, 32 patients were identified in January this year, 9 in February, 13 in March, 3 in April and 43 in May. The number of dengue patients increased several times in the month of June when 272 patients were infected with dengue.
Rainfall has increased in the country since June, resulting in water-logging at different places which ultimately contributed to the breeding of Aedes mosquitoes. Although the two city corporations of Dhaka have taken various steps, including combing campaigns, to stop the breeding of Aedes mosquitoes, the city dwellers have not been getting any benefit at all.
Every day, mosquito eradication officials and employees of the twin city corporations of Dhaka are red-marking the houses where larvae of Aedes mosquito are found, but the number of dengue cases is increasing with every passing day.
Observing that the city corporation's Aedes mosquito control activities are not effective, Professor Dr Be-Nazir Ahmed, former director (Disease Control) of DGHS, told The Business Standard, "It is not possible to control dengue by visiting one or two areas a day. This requires public participation. A committee consisting of building owners and ward residents should work to control dengue. It is not possible to control Aedes mosquitoes by red-marking one or two houses."
He said once dengue enters a country, it is not possible to eradicate it totally, but it is possible to control it through coordinated efforts. As a result of unplanned urbanisation in our country, dengue infection is increasing.
"Before the arrival of corona in the country, dengue was most frightening and everyone initiated measures to control it. The increasing number of dengue patients amid the ongoing corona pandemic this year has increased our panic. One millimetre of water is enough for the breeding of Aedes mosquitoes," said the infectious disease specialist, adding that Aedes mosquitoes can breed even in the water behind a fridge.
Dr Kabirul Bashar, Jahangirnagar University Professor of Zoology, told TBS, "We warned earlier this year about the dengue menace. In our survey in June, the density of Aedes mosquitoes was found much higher in some places of Dhaka. We have been warning since then. We called for emergency action at the time."
The researcher also mentioned that the number of dengue patients will increase in August and September if emergency measures are not taken now.
In 2019, more than one lakh people were infected with dengue in the country and 179 of them died. The extent of dengue outbreak was much less in 2020 when 1,405 people were admitted to hospital. Twelve suspected dengue deaths were reported to the IEDCR and the DGHS confirmed six deaths.
Before 2019, the highest number of dengue deaths was 93 in 2000 when the disease took a worrying turn for the first time, affecting 5,551 people.
Since then, the number of deaths from dengue fever has been steadily declining. From 2003 to 2015, the number of dengue patients was less than 4,000 and the number of deaths was also very low.