Colombo, June 27 (newsin.asia) – Sri Lanka’s Health Ministry, on Tuesday said it would launch a two week nation wide clean up programme this week as the death toll from the dengue epidemic hit 210.
The clean up programme will begin on Wednesday with the participation of the public.
The Health Ministry said the program will be aimed at controlling mosquito density spots which have increased due to the present monsoon rains.
The programme will be implemented under the directive of President Maithripala Sirisena and Health Minister Rajitha Senarathne.
It will be assisted by the Ministries of Provincial Councils and Local Government, and Defence.
According to the National Dengue Prevention Campaign, so far nearly 70,000 people have been infected by dengue and 25 percent of them are below the age of 19.
Sri Lanka’s health workers, last week warned that the country was facing a dengue epidemic as 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.
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.
Last week, the state run Sri Jayawardenapura Hospital in Colombo stopped taking in dengue patients due to overcrowding.
Director of the Hospital, Dr. Susitha Senaratne said the hospital had the capacity to treat 460 fever patients including dengue patients and all beds were occupied. However, he said the hospital will admit new patients when and as in-house patients were being discharged.
Sri Lanka’s Health Minister, Rajitha Senaratne recently said the government had appointed additional task force to clean up mosquito breeding places following concerns that dengue had become an epidemic.
The Minister said the government had imported 500 smoking machines from Germany and an additional 1000 people had been deployed to assess and clean private and public premises in several districts.