Dengue could be controlled in Pakistan: Sri Lankan experts
LAHORE - Considering the extent of the dengue epidemic in the city, it is very difficult to decrease the number of patients, however dengue-related deaths could be “definitely” avoided, experts on dengue from Sri Lanka told Pakistan Today on Thursday.
Various specialists from a team of experts expressed these views after having a detailed technical session with government health officials at the Institute of Public Health (IPH). They stressed the need to “understand” the disease, They said patient management needs to be improved in order to reduce the number of deaths because death is completely avoidable in dengue.
“The virulence is also changing and adapting to changing environment, otherwise it would have been eliminated by now,” Dr Weeruman, a clinician, said, adding that mere fumigation was not enough to control the epidemic and comprehensive measures had to be taken including changes in lifestyles.
“We are here to share our success story and our experience with officials in Pakistan in overcoming the epidemic, so that the Punjab government does not have to go through the process of trial and error already experienced in other parts of the world,” he added.
Another clinician Dr Fernando said the breeding places of dengue mosquito needed to be identified because the habitat of the mosquito was the same as that in Sri Lanka, however “patient-mapping” should be done in order to micromanage the anti-mosquito drive.
“Proactive surveillance needs to be done which means if one patient comes from a place, it means that more will definitely come from the same locality or household, so all such breeding grounds need to be marked to drive an effective campaign,” he added. Moreover, he said well-nourished and fat people were more prone to get severity of disease.
Dr Kusumawathie, an entomologist and vector control specialist with the team, said the number of dengue patients was still...