Three dead, 40 hospitalised
Dengue raises its head in Batticaloa District
Three persons have died and around 400 people in the Batticaloa and Kathankundi hospitals are under treatment for dengue, which is fast spreading in the Eastern Province.
The Eastern Province Provincial Council has accused the health authorities of not taking any tangible action to control the spread of the epidemic.
The EP councillor K. G. Wimal Piyatissa told The Island that a large number of people, including children in the Batticaloa and Kathankudi districts were seeking medical treatment for dengue and about 400 people were under treatment in the Batticalao and Kathankudi hospitals.
He pointed out that in Batticaloa Pahalamuna Ariyampathi village had been badly affected by dengue and health authorities had turned a blind eye to it. As a result, the main occupation of the people in the Batticaloa District, the fisheries industry, had been crippled and some people who had developed symptoms of the disease could not even visit a hospital.
Batticaloa Hospital Director V. Muruganandan, when contacted for comment, said that earlier medical experts were of the view that dengue mosquitoes were breeding in fresh water, but dengue had suddenly spread in spite of the absence of rains. Now medical experts claimed that dengue mosquitoes could also breed in stagnant water in pools in some parts of the Battcaloa district.
When asked about the measures taken to control the spread of the disease, he said that the Regional Health Director had already taken action to destroy mosquito breeding places.
The public co-operation regarding the matter, he said, was rather negative.
Director Epidemelogical Unit Dr. Paba Phaliahawadana said, Provincial and Regional Health Director had been instructed to control the spread of dengue with the support of relevant hospital directors. The hospitals of the area had been provided with required drugs.