BANGALORE: From 540 on September 14 to 708 on October 1. That is 168 cases in 17 days. Dengue is quietly spreading, but the state health department refuses to acknowledge it.
Private and government hospitals are seeing at least 8 to 10 patients every day with dengue-like symptoms. What is shocking is that though doctors confirm that there have been 20 deaths due to dengue since July, the government puts the figures at only four since January 2012.
Dr M Sulochana, joint director, department of communicable diseases, said: "The government has to go by the test reports. Private hospitals are not authorized to confirm dengue cases, they have to send the report to us. Only the Central Surveillance Authority can confirm if the fever is classified into dengue or not."
But on October 1, a private hospital saw three deaths due to dengue-like fever in their pediatric ward. Says Dr N Radhakrishna, a private practitioner: The government is not making any attempts to prevent the spreading of the disease. I see dengue-like fever on all days of the year. The government has not taken enough steps to curb the mosquito menace. Frequent fogging has to be done.''
M Madan Gopal, secretary, health and family welfare department, told TOI: "The government is monitoring dengue cases on day-to-day basis. We have also instructed the BBMP commissioner to review the dengue cases ward wise. We are ready to investigate the cases of deaths in private hospitals."
Though government seems to be behaving like an ostrich, laboratories at Narayana Hrudayalaya and Nimhans too are confirming rise in positive dengue cases. Nimhans has confirmed 36 positive dengue cases in Bangalore in August and September, which is more than one case a day. Where as Narayana Hrudayalaya sees about 10-12 positive cases of dengue every day.