NEW DELHI: Chikungunya and dengue continued to wreak havoc in Delhi with the death toll from the two vector-borne diseases climbing to 30 on Thursday even as the number of affected people crossed 2,800. The death toll due to dengue rose to 18 with half of the fatalities reported from AIIMS even as the number of cases of this vector-borne disease crossed 1,100.
Five deaths from chikungunya complications were reported till yesterday at Apollo Hospital here, and most of the victims were aged 80 or above. According to the National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), the number of chikungunya cases in Delhi has spiked to 1,724 till September 11 as fever clinics in the city continue to be swamped with patients.
The AAP government also requested the Centre to convene a meeting of the health ministers of neighbouring states to prepare a strategy to deal with dengue and chikungunya “outbreak” as many of the patients are coming to Delhi due to “lack” of proper healthcare facilities there.
A senior government official said people can call at 011-22307145 to get information relating to nearest fever clinics and also medical assistance.
The Health Department of Delhi government has set up 355 fever clinics across the city to deal with dengue and chinkungunya cases, the official said. Besides, the government has also made public lists of its 24 hospitals where diagnostic tests are done free of cost. These hospitals where free medicines are also available include Aruna Asaf Ali Hospital, Babu Jagjivan Ram Hospital, Bhagwan Mahavir Hospital and GTB Hospital. “The Government has directed medical superintendents of its hospitals not to refuse to admit patients. There is no dearth of beds at government hospitals as about 2,000 beds are lying vacant,” the official said.
Dengue and chikungunya both are caused by the same aedes mosquito but dengue can be contracted through four viral strains while chikungunya is caused only by one strain. Doctors say that chikungunya is not a life-threatening disease in general, but in rare cases leads to complications that prove fatal, especially in children and old persons.