Dengue menace: Death toll tops 100

Staff Correspondent | Published: 00:00, Aug 15,2019


At least 16 people were killed in ten districts and more than 7,500 others were infected afresh across the country since Eid vacation began Sunday as authorities struggled to contain dengue, the mosquito borne viral fever.

In unofficial estimates the death toll from the disease reached 100 until Wednesday, though the government estimate puts the number at 40.   

The government lagging far behind in calculating the number of deaths caused by the disease owing to the lengthy bureaucratic process needed to be fulfilled before confirming causes of deaths.

On Wednesday, a nine-year-old child, a college students and an elderly man died of dengue in Pabna, Faridpur and Madaripur. At least 1,880 dengue patients were admitted to different hospitals across the country in 24 hours until 8:00am Wednesday.

New Age Correspondent in Pabna reported that Mosabbir Hossain Mahfuz, 20, was the first death confirmed to have been caused by dengue in the district since an unprecedented outbreak of the disease was first reported in the capital in July.

Mahfuz had just completed his higher secondary education and travelled to Dhaka on admission purposes recently.

At least 46 dengue patients were undergoing treatment at the PMCH until Wednesday as the hospital treated 245 patients suffering from the fever over the last three weeks.

Ranjan Kumar Dutta, an assistant director at Pabna Medical College Hospital, said that Mahfuz had been admitted with symptoms of concussions and fever Tuesday morning.

The other elderly victim of the fever was identified as Abdul Mazid, 80, a resident of Baheratola union, Shibchar, Madaripur.

Zakir Hossain Haider, chairman, Baheratola union parishad, said that Mazid died in the early hours of Wednesday after physicians sent him back home saying that his illness could not be cured. 

News agency United News of Bangladesh reported that Tanjid Mollah, 9, died at Faridpur Medical College and Hospital at 11:00am Tuesday.

At least 373 dengue patients were undergoing treatment at different hospital in the district, reported UNB.

Of the other, 14 victims died of dengue in three days of Eid vacation since Sunday, seven died in Dhaka, and one each in Lakahmipur, Khulna, Mymensingh, Noakhali, Chapainawabganj, Rangpur and Narayanganj.

At least four of the victims were children, aged between two and 11.

The victims who died in Dhaka have been identified as Nazma Akhter, 48, Akram Hossain, 40, Mohammad Rifat, 22, Samia, 8, Mahbubullah Haque, 35, Billal Hossain, 40, and Samia, 2.5 years old.

The seven other deceased have been identified as Avijit Shaha, 11, Monirul Islam, 32, Abdul Malek, 25, Farhad, 20, Amir Hossain, 60, Russell, 32, and Parash, 4.

Since January, 46,351 people have been hospitalised with dengue fever and 38,442 were released after treatment, according to Health Emergency Operation Centre and Control Room.

At the moment, the number of dengue patients being treated at government and other hospitals in outlying districts stood at 7869, said the control room.

Since dengue’s first occurrence in Bangladesh in 2000, the infected patients over the years have mostly been confined to the capital city. But this year is an exception — the mosquito-borne viral fever has spread all over the country for the first time.

A record number of 18,207 patients were diagnosed with the fever in just nine days in August alone, leading to further spread of the fever with people travelling out of Dhaka to celebrate Eid at their village homes in the outlying districts.

So far, 27,890 people were affected with dengue fever in August while in July 16,253 people contracted dengue fever, according to the control room.

The situation has become so critical that dozens of dengue patients are admitted almost every day at hospitals in every one of the 64 districts.

The government has been under severe criticism for not acknowledging the fact that the disease has become an epidemic.

The government has been accused of denial since it even refused to admit the existence of the disease until hospitals overflowed with patients, making headlines on newspapers and online portals.

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