Presently, people are facing a double blow following a sharp spike in dengue cases countrywide amid the Covid-19 crisis. As per DGHS sources, at least 8,041 people have been diagnosed with dengue this year, including 36 deaths. Almost all the dengue cases have been found in the capital. And, the situation has turned complicated this year because of the fact that dengue and Covid-19 present similar symptoms, making patients' illnesses more difficult to diagnose.
Dengue cases rise every alternate year. In 2019, the country witnessed massive dengue cases when over one lakh cases were detected with 179 deaths. Earlier, entomologists warned of the growth in dengue cases across the country this year. But the public health authorities as well as the city fathers did not pay heed to their warning and did little to tackle the situation.
It is true that in any health crisis collective efforts of both the public and the relevant authorities are a must to bring the situation under control. But, inside Dhaka city, the residents have lesser scope to combat the menace at own initiatives. The larva of Aedes mosquito spreads along a vast area of the city. Being public spaces, the city corporations can take action there. It has become crystal clear that the city corporations' outdoor fogging, spraying or cleaning drives that they did sometimes were mostly eyewash.
The city fathers should adopt long-term plans to deal with the vector-borne disease. For their part, the city residents also need to keep clean their toilets, air conditioners and flower vases et cetera. Then and only then we may hope for containing the threat of the tiny insect.