Published Date: 2010-07-03 16:00:03
Subject: PRO/EDR> Malaria, fever - India: (Mumbai), RFI
Archive Number: 20100703.2216
MALARIA, FEVER - INDIA: (MUMBAI), REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: 22 Jun 2010
Source: DNA [edited]
Malaria is back in Mumbai
The monsoon may have just begun, but the rising incidence of malaria
and fever in the city has already become a cause of serious concern.
Compared to last year , the city has seen a rise of 28 percent
in malaria cases and 22 percent escalation in the number of fever
cases recorded so far.
According to records with the civic health department, 1175 cases of
malaria and 3474 cases of fever have been reported in the city's
private and public hospitals since 1 June 2010. In one day alone, 44
cases of malaria and 171 cases of fever were admitted to the city's
hospitals. Malaria has also claimed 2 lives since 1 June 2010, said
civic health authorities.
"Mumbai, with its ever-burgeoning population, humid climate and
optimum temperature, is the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.
The hectic construction activity has only served to worsen the
situation," said Dr Arvind Bhonsale, a paediatrician, who has treated
at least 6 patients with malaria at his Kandivli clinic in the last 2
"Kurla, with 261 cases of malaria is the worst affected," said Dr
Anuradha Pednekar, a Shiv Sena corporator [Shive Sena is the political
party controlling the Mumbai municipal corporation][. Water stagnation
-- be it in puddles on the road, in discarded rubber tyres, in water
tanks, or even in buckets used to store water inside homes -- is what
makes Mumbaikars vulnerable to mosquitoes, said doctors. "In the past
15 days, my patient load has more than doubled. Cases of malaria too
have peaked," said Dr SN Acharya, a Kurla-based general practitioner.
The soaring numbers of malaria and fever cases has even caught the
Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) off guard. In a general body
meeting on Monday [21 Jun 2010], leader of the opposition in the BMC,
Rajhans Singh, raised a motion and questioned the civic
administration's initiative to curb the menace.
Upendra Doshi, a Congress corporator, blamed the civic body's single
minded attention on the census. "Most of the health staff has been
deployed for census work. How can you expect the cases reported to be
treated properly," said Doshi. Yogesh Sagar, BJP corporator [BJP is
another political party] from Kandivli, went a step further and said,
"If any instances of larval breeding of mosquitoes are found, the ward
officers of that area would be suspended."
The leaders also discussed at length the civic administration's
failure in fogging and disinfecting mosquito breeding grounds in water
logged areas. However, Ashish Kumar Singh, additional municipal
commissioner, rebuffed such claims. "We are doing our best to curb
the spread of the disease. An active surveillance team is deployed at
all the chronic spots every 10 days. At the same time, fogging and
disinfecting has been done at every susceptible area," said Singh.
[Byline: Priyanka Sharma; Deepa Suryanarayan]
[ProMED will be happy to post recent statistics on malaria and fever
cases in Mumbai. Mumbai is regarded as a low risk area, but this
applies to affluent areas only.
A previous study (Karn and Harada. Field survey on water supply,
sanitation and associated health impacts in urban poor communities--a
case from Mumbai City, India. Water Sci Technol. 2002;46:269-75) found
that malaria was common in slum areas of the city with an annual
incidence of 126 per 1000 populations.
If these data are still relevant today the report may merely reflect
normal seasonal changes. - Mod.EP]
[Malaria mosquitoes (_Anopheles_ spp.) do not breed in the water
sources mentioned here, but dengue vector mosquitoes (_Aedes_ spp.)
do. It is likely that the fever cases referred to are cases of
dengue. - Mod.JW]
[The interactive HealthMap/ProMED map for Mumbai is available at:
<http://healthmap.org/r/00BT> - CopyEd.EJP]