Following a house inspection conducted yesterday for mosquito breeding sites in Cinnamon Gardens, many of the gardens were in a highly neglected state with heaps of garbage scattered everywhere, Dr. Pradeep Kariyawasam, Chief Medical Officer of Health, said.
Dr. Kariyawasam said that if this continues, there will be a major outbreak of dengue patients in Cinnamon Gardens, and with the National Hospital situated in close proximity, it will be worse.
The campaign was held yesterday by the Public Health Department of the Colombo Municipal Council in collaboration with the Environmental Division of the Police, private organisations and NGOs to raise awareness, as a preventive measure.
Dr. Kariyawasam said that the campaign was decided upon following the large number of dengue patients reported from Colombo this year. “Though there is no outbreak in one area, there is an unprecedented number of dengue patients reported from all over the city”.
According to the Sri Lanka Epidemiology Unit, 4,472 dengue patients have been reported during the first four months of 2011, viz., 910, 1050, 1118 and 1394 patients in January, February, March and April respectively.
Areas chosen for the inspection had the highest number of dengue patients reported. They were Borella, Wanathamulla, Kuppiyawatta, Thimbirigasyaya, Dematagoda and Kirulapone.
Dr. Kariyawasam said that notices were issued yesterday to the owners of the mosquito breeding sites, and the Family Health Officers will follow it up. “If people don’t comply with our requests and keep their gardens clean, we have to take the matter to courts,” he added.
He further said that a special team will be sent to re-inspect Cinnamon Gardens where many mosquito breeding sites were found. “It was like that in the area five to six years ago, but the situation improved during the last few years, though unfortunately, it has gone back to what it was again,” he lamented.