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Dengue Outbreak in Uttar Pradesh

Dengue Outbreak in Uttar Pradesh

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  • GS 3 || Science & Technology || Health & Medicine

Why in the news?

Dengue:

  • Dengue fever is a viral infection spread by mosquitos.
  • It can cause flu-like symptoms such as a high temperature, headache, and severe muscle and joint pain. Dengue fever has become more common in recent decades.
  • It is mostly found in tropical and subtropical regions of the world.

Symptoms of Dengue:

  • In a mild incidence of dengue fever, children and teenagers show little signs or symptoms. If symptoms appear after being bitten by an infected mosquito, they will continue for four to seven days.
    • Pain in the head
    • Muscle or joint discomfort
    • Vomiting
    • Loss of appetite
    • Inflamed glands
    • Aches and pains behind the eyes
    • Rash, and so forth.

What causes Dengue Fever?

  • Dengue fever is caused by four different kinds of dengue viruses that are transmitted by mosquitos.
  • All of the viruses are transmitted by mosquitos of the Aedes aegypti or Aedes albopictus species.
  • Dengue virus has four different serotypes (DEN-1, DEN-2, DEN-3 and DEN-4). They are members of the Flavivirus genus and family Flaviviridae.
  • The Aedes aegypti mosquito is native to Africa, but it may now be found in tropical regions all over the world.
  • When a mosquito bites a person who is infected with the dengue virus, the virus enters the mosquito.

Factors responsible for spread of dengue in India:

  • Unplanned urbanization: As more people relocate to cities, there is greater human-mosquito interaction, which raises the risk of illness. The main risk factors for the spread of such mosquitoes are urbanization, bad town planning, and inadequate sanitation. Open sewers, poor waste disposal, urban slums, and open drains are all breeding grounds for dengue fever.
  • Climate change: According to recent studies, India’s seasonal mean temperature has risen substantially in recent years. Temperature raises the risk of dengue fever by raising the pace at which mosquitos grow and the virus spreads, thereby increasing the rate of transmission.
  • Pleasant climate: Dengue fever is a tropical illness that affects countries around the Equator. The survival of the vector that transmits the dengue virus is aided by hot weather, monsoon, and intermittent rainfall.
  • Lack of coordination: In the delivery of public health initiatives, there is a lack of cooperation between local governments and health authorities. As a result, the response to the dengue outbreak is unplanned.
  • Manpower shortage: The number of skilled personnel available to combat dengue fever is limited. In comparison to New York’s 5,338 and London’s per 100,000 population, Delhi and Mumbai have 1,260 and 895 employees per 100,000 population, respectively. Many government positions are still unfilled. Active monitoring against dengue fever is not carried out in India due to a lack of staff.
  • Poor control measures: Inadequate vector (mosquito) control efforts have produced favorable circumstances for the spread of dengue virus and its mosquito vectors. Dengue fever has spread due to a lack of effective planning to manage the vector. Mosquito resistance is exacerbated by a lack of financing, intermittent fumigation efforts, and inadequate administration of mosquito eradication initiatives.
  • Under-reporting: Dengue fever cases are frequently under-reported for political reasons as well as to prevent panic among the general public. Dengue fever is more likely to spread as a result of this.

Initiatives taken:

  • The Chief Minister of Delhi, has chosen to start a massive 10-week anti-mosquito campaign against dengue and chikungunya, with the goal of increasing people’ engagement in preventing their spread. ‘10 Hafte, 10 Baje, 10 Minute – Har Ravivar, dengue par war’ is the name of the initiative. As part of the effort, the government has encouraged Delhi residents to set aside 10 minutes every Sunday at 10 a.m. to inspect their houses for any sources of stagnant water, as dengue mosquitoes can only reproduce in clean water.

Some measures to prevent spread of dengue:

  • Improving the healthcare system: Early case detection can help to minimize dengue mortality. To deal with dengue outbreaks, health services must be enhanced. It is critical to train health care workers at all levels of the health care system.
  • Disease surveillance: In order to detect outbreaks and implement early and efficient control measures, effective surveillance of dengue cases is required. Singapore employs the Geographical Information System (GIS) to map and analyze data on dengue fever (GIS). This entails mapping the streets for vector density in the presence of dengue cases.
  • Effective Planning: An effective strategy for dealing with any epidemic should be established. It’s a crucial part of the broader plan to stop the spread of dengue fever. All stakeholders should be included in the strategy.
  • Effective vector control measures: To avoid a dengue epidemic, effective vector control measures are essential. To minimize dengue transmission, preventive and vector control measures such as fumigation, awareness campaigns, and cleaning drives are required. The WHO promoted integrated vector management strategy to vector control should be applied.
  • Coordination: Effective dengue prevention and control need a multi-sectoral strategy. It necessitates collaboration between the Ministry of Health and other relevant ministries and government agencies, as well as the private sector, non-governmental organizations, and local communities.

Conclusion:

Dengue fever is a disease that is only seen in India. To combat the pandemic, an integrated approach is required. Several causative elements must be managed. The Swachh Bharat Mission is critical in preventing dengue fever and should be used to increase awareness about the disease. Fighting the dengue outbreak is difficult without coordinated measures.

Mains oriented question:

Dengue is endemic to India. An integrated approach is needed to tackle the epidemic. Explain. (200 words)