Dengue cases continue as disease spreads across Bangladesh

DHAKA – The situation of dengue has deteriorated in Bangladesh as the mosquito-borne viral disease spread out in most parts of the country in less than a month.

A total of 1,096 fresh cases of dengue were reported from the capital Dhaka and elsewhere in the country in the last 24 hours as of 8:00 am local time Monday, Abdur Rahim, a Health Ministry control room official told Xinhua on Tuesday.

He said the total number of confirmed cases as of Monday in the country since Jan 1 rose to 13,637, registering a record high.

The data reported by the Bangladeshi Ministry of Health gave an alert as Dhaka has seen a rapid surge of the disease.

The number of dengue patients in the first 29 days of July rose to 11,450, which reportedly had surpassed the total number of patients in any past year.

Ayesha Akhter, assistant director at the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), told Xinhua the number of dengue patients was 946 in July last year, saying some 10,148 people were infected with dengue fever in 2018 and 26 of them died.

Officials said Dhaka and its neighboring districts are more vulnerable to the risk of mosquito-borne diseases and most hospitals in Dhaka and clinics are now crammed with hundreds of new dengue patients every day.

Eight people have died of dengue so far this year, the Health Ministry official records showed.

However, local media Prothom Alo reported on Tuesday that the death toll was registered at 47, saying the disease has spread to 59 out of 64 districts.

Another local media Somoy TV reported on Tuesday that four people who had been diagnosed with dengue fever, died in hospitals in Dhaka and southern Barisal town, some 180 km south of Dhaka, in the early hours of Tuesday.

Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Malik earlier said in a press conference that the government has taken actions.

The minister asked all city corporations and municipalities to take necessary steps to destroy the breeding grounds of the Aedes mosquitoes.

Dengue is transmitted by several species of mosquito within the genus Aedes. The first case of mosquito-borne viral infection was reported in Bangladesh in 2000, and some 100 people died from the disease from 2000 to 2003.

Impoverished states are especially vulnerable to viruses because of insufficient biosecurity, deficient disease surveillance and protection measures.

The monsoon period from June to September is usually the peak season of dengue fever in Bangladesh and transmission becomes rampant in the country.

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