Dengue affects six times more even before breeding season starts

While there were no deaths in the last two years, three have already died so far this year ·       June to September is considered the breeding season of Aedes. ·       Dengue isn’t a Dhaka-centric infection anymore. ·       There’s thought of applying the new drug BTI bacteria.

Dengue carrier Aedes mosquito.

Even though the breeding season of Aedes mosquito hasn’t started yet the number of dengue patients has been shooting up alarmingly which in figures is almost six times higher than from the first ‘five months’ of the last five years.

While death from dengue remained zero at this time last year, so far 13 have died already this year.

The dengue season usually starts from June, with the onset of the rainy season. Rainwater accumulates at different places and this prevails till September.

That’s why this period is considered the breeding season of Aedes mosquito, the carrier of dengue virus.

As for the reason behind the increase in dengue cases even before the beginning of the breeding season, entomologists are saying that Aedes larvae are now found in many places that have no connection to the rainwater.

A dengue-infected child at Dhaka Shishu Hospital.
Prothom Alo

Multi-storey building parking spaces, under-construction building basements, WASA meter boxes and water stored in households breeding places.

Aedes mosquitoes are also breeding in the water accumulated inside houses that are lower than the road level as a result of the streets being raised higher.

There were 100 dengue patients hospitalised from January to 21 May of 2021. There was no dengue deaths reported during that period.

There were no deaths within that same period following year 2022 either. However, the number of patients had increased to 243.

According to the directorate general of health services, the number of dengue-infected patients till 21 May of the current year is 1,447, which is 5.96 times higher compared to last year.

And compared to 2021, it’s almost 14.5 times. A total of 13 dengue patients have died till now this year.

Professor of zoology at Jahangirnagar University, entomologist Kabirul Bashar, told Prothom Alo that water is now accumulating throughout the year due to various reasons.

Dengue isn’t a Dhaka-centric infection anymore. People are being infected with dengue all over the country.

Till 8:00am Monday, 40 dengue patients have been hospitalised within the last 24 hours. Only four of them were admitted to different hospitals outside of Dhaka.

At present, 148 dengue patients are admitted in hospitals across the country. Of them, 26 are hospitalisded outside of Dhaka, with six in Chattogram, three in Cox’s Bazar, two each in Narsingdi, Manikganj, Mymensingh, Lakshimpur and one each in Kishoreganj, Khagrachhari and Satkhira.

Apart from these 20 patients, four of the remaining six patients are admitted in Barishal Sher-E-Bangla Medical College Hospital while the other two are in Chattogram Medical College Hospital.

Dhaka South City Corporation’s public relations department has said that crash programmes are carried out in wards where there are breeding grounds of Aedes mosquitoes.

This programme is run based on findings of the survey conducted by the directorate general of health services in the pre-monsoon season.

Since the survey results came out very late this time, they aren’t finding larvae while taking measures accordingly, said responsible officials of Dhaka South City.  

Aedes larvae.
Prothom Alo

Public relations officer of Dhaka South City Corporation, Abu Naser has told Prothom Alo that letters have been sent to 13 partner organisations under the south city as part of the mosquito control programme.

Ten executive magistrates have also been asked for running the mobile court. A control room on mosquitoes will also be opened within June.

More emphasis has been put on raising public awareness in Aedes mosquito control. Scouts and BNCC members have also been involved in this, said chief health officer of Dhaka North City Corporation Brigadier General Zobaidur Rahman. The issue of applying the new drug BTI bacteria is also underway, added he.

Regarding the raise in the number of dengue cases even before the breeding season starts, professor of zoology at Jahangirnagar University and entomologist Kabirul Bashar told Prothom Alo that water is now accumulating throughout the year due to various reasons.

Since rainfall has started in May, more breeding grounds have been created for Aedes. With suggestions for solution he said that city residents have to be involved with city corporation activities. The corporations should make special arrangements in areas were people have contracted dengue.