As 80 percent of Dengue cases have been reported from urban areas, the Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu instructed all the Stakeholder departments of State Task Force to strictly implement the preventive measures to control the outbreak of Dengue, Malaria, chikungunya and other vector & waterborne diseases.While presiding over the meeting of State Task Force, the Health Minister said that role of local government department is to ensure the spray of insecticides and larvicides for prevention and control of Dengue in the urban areas. Similarly, Rural Development and Panchayats department can support in prevention of mosquito breeding by spray of larvicides in perennial ponds, seeding of larvivorous fishes in the ponds in the rural areas. Awareness generation through village health and sanitation committees can be very helpful in prevention of vector borne diseases.He said that department of Transport and Roadways can ensure that discarded tyres are either condemned or stored properly, so that these tyres should not be the mosquitoes breeding sites. He said that department of Fisheries can provide technical support to district hatcheries where breeding of gambusia has been done.Mr. Sidhu instructed the Department of Medical Education and Research to ensure a separated dengue ward in all medical colleges and its blood bank should have sufficient stock of blood and all diagnostic equipment and machines should be functional. The department also ensures that Malaria should be treated as per “National Drug Policy of Malaria”.
Considering the important role of Education department to spread awareness, he said that school children can participate to sensitize people for prevention of vector borne diseases and early reporting of the child with fever, rash or any other such symptoms to prevent outbreak of communicable diseases like chickenpox, measles, mumps etc. He said that these guidelines must be shared with all government and private schools.Pointing out the maximum cases of dengue have been reported from the migarate populations, the Minister said that Labour department can share mapping of migrant population/ labours/ brick kilns so that health department can plan special screening and surveillance drive of these areas. Indian medical Association can appeal to the private practitioners to follow nation guidelines for treatment of communicable disease and should report all the notified diseases to the government.Mr. Sidhu informed that 8345 dengue cases and 22 deaths were reported in State in 2020 and during the current year till July 20th total 72 dengue cases have been reported. He said that with the concrete efforts of Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme no death due to dengue has been reported till date and since last 2 year no chikungunya cases have been reported in State.Health Minister said that State and District level teams of IDSP have been doing outstanding job and they have played a key role to control the spread of coronavirus and other outbreaks across the State. Sharing the data of Malaria Elimination drive, Principal Secretary Health Mr. Hussan Lal said that no death due to malaria has been reported since last 5 years in Punjab. He said that Malaria cases have been drastically reduced and only 109 cases reported in 2020. It was also informed that Punjab State is the first State to introduce a Malaria treatment card to ensure monitoring of the complete radical treatment.Representatives from stakeholder departments viz Local Government, Rural Development and Panchayats, Water Supply and Sanitation, Water supply and Sewerage Board, Transport, Roadways, Animal Husbandry, Fisheries, Medical Education and Research, Education, Labour, Indian Medical Association were present in the meeting.