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Malaria cases on the rise in city

TNN Jun 19, 2011, 10.01pm IST

HYDERABAD: Malaria is fast spreading its tentacles in Greater Hyderabad. As on date, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) has recorded as many as 145 malaria cases in the twin cities.

The health department is ironically observing A n t i - M a l a r i a month currently and has planned a slew of activities throughout June, but has no manpower to implement them. Sources say that out of the 107 posts of health assistants, only 22 are on the job for the entire Greater Hyderabad region.

The district health department has identified high risk areas prone to malaria outbreaks. The list included Jubilee Hills, Banjara Hills, parts of Indira Park, Sanathnagar, Saidabad, Bholakpur, Amberpet, Uppuguda, Puranapul, Kurmaguda, Jiyaguda. The highest number of cases, the officials said are being reported from Banjara Hills and Bholakpur in Musheerabad.

Apart from government facilities, even private hospitals are recording 10-15 cases of malaria every week from the city as well as the neighbouring districts over the last fortnight, a specialist at a private hospital in the city said.

Doctors said that potholed roads, stinking streets and stagnant water in the city offer many breeding ground for mosquitoes that cause the spread of the vector-born disease. While GHMC claims that fogging and anti-larval operations were being undertaken to curb the mosquito menace, year after year, there seems to be no respite for denizens.

Sources said that the civic body is concentrating on VIP areas for the fogging operations. We are unable to cover most of the areas. With the available manpower, it is highly impossible to cover every area, said an official. He added that the malaria labs in the 12 districts, area and teaching hospitals diagnosing the disease are also understaffed. Out of 17 posts of lab technicians, only 12 are working.

We are unable to identify the cases. Because of the load, the quality also suffers, said a senior official. He added that patients are instead going to private hospitals and do not complete the 14-day treatment, said another official.

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