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Declare dengue as medical emergency in Karnataka: BJP MP Dr C N Manjunath

The government should constitute a task force comprising experts to control the dengue infection, Manjunath said.
Last Updated : 06 July 2024, 10:01 IST

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Bengaluru: Cardiologist and Bangalore Rural BJP MP Dr C N Manjunath on Saturday urged the Congress government in Karnataka to declare dengue as a “state medical emergency” in the state, and called for more efforts to control mosquitoes.

“In Karnataka, dengue has become endemic. It must be declared as a state medical emergency,” Manjunath told a press conference, pulling up the Dinesh Gundu Rao-led health department for not doing enough.

“Only if we control mosquitoes can we control dengue. That’s because there’s no definitive cure for dengue fever. So, we must fight mosquitoes on a war footing. The government has faltered on this front,” Manjunath said, lamenting that he is not seeing municipal authorities even spray disinfectants.

Manjunath cautioned that dengue can bring with it chikungunya, Zika and malaria. “Once dengue-related complications kick in, there’s death in 99 per cent of cases. Complications arise after fever recedes. Platelets will drop and blood vessels start leaking,” he said.

The cardiologist blamed incomplete infrastructure for the failure in controlling mosquitoes. “Our infrastructure works don’t finish on time. Flyovers and underpasses are half-complete. Roads aren’t repaired. So, water gets collected during rains,” Manjunath said, adding that dengue is carried by the aedes aegypti mosquito, which is known to bite during daytime.

Manjunath said the state has already reported six to seven deaths. “About 7,000 people are infected. Bengaluru alone is reporting 500-700 cases daily. Cases are rising in Chikmagalur, Mysuru and Hassan,” he said.

The government should constitute a task force comprising experts to control the dengue infection, Manjunath said. “Like it was done during Covid, the government should bear the cost of treatment for dengue fever patients,” he said.

Manjunath also asked the government to distribute mosquito nets to people dwelling in slums and ghettos. “And in schools, children should be provided with mosquito repellent patches,” he said.

Dengue vaccine

Manjunath said Mexico, Brazil, Vietnam and “even third-world countries” have introduced a vaccine for dengue. “It is usually given to those aged between nine and 16 years. This vaccine reduces mortality rate, and ensures that the infection doesn’t become critical,” he said, adding that it was time for India to provide the dengue vaccine. “I’ll take this up with the union government,” he said.

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Published 06 July 2024, 10:01 IST

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