Surjit Kumar Jayani, Health and F.W Minister, Punjab here today informed that as a special initiative to check the spread of dengue & malaria, the department of Health and Family Welfare has signed an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with Department of Fisheries for development of hatcheries for larvivorous fishes (Gambusia), a type of fish that prevents breeding of mosquitoes. Besides this the department is conducting special drive of spraying insecticides and larvicides in and around houses from where dengue cases are reported for prevention of spread of infection. Deputy Commissioners of the districts are regularly holding meetings of different departments, NGO’s, Selfhelp Groups etc for inter-sectoral coordination for prevention of dengue. Department of Local Government is conducting fogging in the affected areas and burnt oil is being spread on stagnant water which cannot be emptied. Advocacy workshops, cycle rallies, meetings, school seminars are being held at district level for awareness of general public.
Sh Jayani told that all Government hospitals are fully equipped to provide effective dengue treatment. He appealed that Patients having dengue-like symptoms must report at the nearest Government hospital. Dengue wards with mosquito nets have been established in each District Hospital and Sub-pisional hospitals of the State of Punjab. Health Minister further appealed people to help the health department to check the spread of disease by taking small steps like avoiding collection of water in and around houses, cleaning coolers and water tanks once a week, clearing stagnant water from flower pots, waste tyres, utensils etc to avoid breeding of mosquitoes.Ms. Vini Mahajan, Principal Secretary (Health, Medical Education & Research), Punjab stated that all suspected as well as confirmed patients of dengue are given supportive treatment in the form of antipyretics and intravenous fluids free of cost in Government hospitals. She informed that Blood Component separators are available at each district hospital for provision of blood components for serious cases of dengue. Aphresis machines are available at Civil Hospital Amritsar, Bathinda, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, SAS Nagar and Sangrur for provision of platelets to cases of dengue haemorrhagic fever. She informed that adequate stocks of drugs and other consumables including testing kits are available in the government hospitals for treatment of dengue.
Dr Ashok Nayyar, Director Health Services, Punjab told that dengue is a viral disease which is spread after bite of mosquito named Aedes aegypti that breeds in stagnant clean water. Egg of Aedes aegypti develops in adult mosquito in 7-10 days. Breeding of Aedes aegypti can be prevented by clearing stagnant water once a week so as to break the life cycle of the mosquito. Aedes aegypti has black and white stripes on body and wings and it bites during the day time only. Patients having symptoms with duration less than 7 days can be tested with NS1 Ag ELISA test and with IgM Mac ELISA test, if fever is of longer duration. Both NS1 Ag and IgM Mac ELISA tests are done free of cost at 15 centres (Govt Medical College Amritsar, Patiala & Faridkot, Civil Hospitals Bathinda, Fatehgarh Sahib, Ferozepur, Gurdaspur, Hoshiarpur, Jalandhar, Kapurthala, Ludhiana, Mansa, Moga, Sangrur & SAS Nagar. Without signs of bleeding and haemorrhage, platelets are required if the count of paltelets goes below 20000. Patient can be treated symptomatically if there is no bleeding and platelet count is more than 20000. Sufficient test kits are available at these centres
Symptoms of Dengue Fever:
1. High grade fever with severe headache
2. Pain in joint and mucles
3. Pain on movement of eyes
4. Nausea and vomiting
5. Bleeding from gums and other body parts if condition deteriorates