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163 Dengue Cases, 54 Malaria Cases Reported In Delhi From January 1-July 15: MCD Report

Along with this, the department also checked the availability of free chlorine in water tankers of the Delhi Jal Board to ensure supply of safe and clean drinking water.

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Over 160 dengue cases have been reported in the national capital till mid-July this year, the highest for this period since 2018, according to a municipal report released on Monday. The report issued by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) also said that 54 cases of malaria have been recorded in the same period.   

The Delhi government has come up with a "mega action plan" to combat the spread of vector-borne diseases under which steps will be taken to determine the serotype of the prevailing dengue virus in the city, officials said on Sunday. 

Health Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj on Sunday chaired a high-level meeting on the preparedness for keeping vector-borne diseases under check in the national capital. "After flooding, there is a fear of cases of vector-borne disease like dengue, chikungunya and malaria rising. But that trend is not being seen at the moment. Cases of conjunctivitis and skin allergy are mostly being reported from relief camps," he told reporters during his visit to a Delhi government hospital here.

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Delhi Mayor Shelly Oberoi on Monday, however, said there is a possibility of a rise in dengue and malaria cases in the national capital this year due to flooding in several areas, adding that directions have been issued to departments concerned to take steps to check mosquito breeding and clear the silt and sludge left by the Yamuna waters.

According to the MCD report, 163 cases have been reported in the national capital this year till July 15. The number of cases reported in first half of July stood at 41; 40 in June; and 23 in May. For the same period (January 1-July 15), the number of cases of dengue reported in Delhi in 2022 stood at 158; and 40 in 2021; 28 in 2020; 32 in 2019; and 43 in 2018.

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The MCD, in a statement, on Monday said it has carried out fogging and spraying of insecticides in flood relief camps to prevent vector-borne diseases. The public health department of the corporation pasted 700 stickers and displayed 37 banners to make people aware about these diseases. The department also distributed 1,000 ORS (oral rehydration solutions) packets and 160 bottles of chlorine to ensure availability of clean drinking water in these camps. 

Along with this, the department also checked the availability of free chlorine in water tankers of the Delhi Jal Board to ensure supply of safe and clean drinking water, it added. The existing helpline -- 1031 -- used during the COVID-19 pandemic will now be utilised to facilitate dengue treatment. This expansion of services will ensure comprehensive support to individuals requiring medical assistance, the Delhi health department said on Sunday.

The MCD commissioner has been directed to "deploy drones" for mosquito surveillance and control, particularly in vulnerable areas such as construction sites, nurseries, and abandoned houses with inaccessible terraces, it said. This innovative approach will help identify breeding sites and implement targeted interventions to prevent disease transmission, officials said.

Recognising the importance of awareness among children, "dengue homework cards" will be provided to students in both government and private schools. These cards will be reviewed by class teachers on a weekly basis to reinforce knowledge about dengue prevention and promote responsible actions, they said.

"As an additional precautionary measure, schools will be directed to allow students to wear full-sleeve school dress or full-sleeve clothing until November. This step will provide added protection against mosquito bites and minimise the risk of disease transmission," the statement said.     

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For the same period (January 1-July 15), the number of malaria cases reported in the last few years are -- 29 in 2022; 17 in 2021; 40 in 2020 and 75 in 2019 -- the report said.

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