Colombo, June 20 (newsin.asia) – Sri Lanka’s health workers, on Tuesday warned that the country was facing a dengue epidemic with over 63,000 people affected by the virus and at least 200 people killed.
Health workers at the Epidemiology Unit said there was a tremendous rise in the Type 2 virus and urgent preventive and curative measures were ongoing to prevent the numbers from rising further.
Hospitals had also been geared with the necessary facilities to treat the patients and hospitals were working on equipping additional beds to treat emergency patients.
“Mosquito breeding places are abundant throughout the country. With 63,987 patients reported in the first six months of this year alone, what we are facing is an epidemic,” health workers at the Epidemiology Unit said.
“This situation warrants regular removal of possible mosquito breeding sites from the environment. It is also important to seek medical attention in the event of fever by day three of the illness,” health workers added.
Last year a total of 54,727 dengue patients and 78 deaths were reported throughout the island.
So far this year, the most number of cases have been reported from the Western Province, with 27,272 patients.
The Colombo district recorded the highest number with 14,189 patients while Gampaha district recorded the second highest number with 9,370 patients.
The Trincomalee district, in eastern Sri Lanka, recorded a total of 4,318 dengue patients.
On Monday, the Sri Jayawardenapura Hospital in Colombo stopped taking in dengue patients due to overcrowding.
Director of the Hospital, Dr. Susitha Senaratne told the local Daily Mirror the hospital had the capacity to treat 460 fever patients including dengue patients and as of Tuesday, all beds were occupied. However, he said the hospital will admit new patients when and as in-house patients were being discharged.
Meanwhile, the Health Ministry has begun distributing leaflets in the Chinese language to workers at Chinese construction sites in the country on how to avoid mosquito breeding places and how to keep construction premises clean.
These steps were taken after some Chinese national workers were infected with the dengue virus.