Dengue claims 83 lives; Health Ministry gets ready to battle it with BTI
A total of 83 deaths has been recorded due to dengue for this year alone, a Ministry of Health spokesman said.
One of the latest victims was the receptionist at the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation.
The husband of the victim Mahinda Rupasinghe, an employee of a private radio station said his wife had come down with the fever last Thursday (August 23). When medicines prescribed by the family physician provided no relief by Saturday, she was taken to Jayewardenepura Hospital, where officials said there was no need for the patient to be hospitalised.
Mr. Rupasinghe, however, was adamant and admitted his wife as the fever was not subsiding. By Sunday evening her condition worsened and she was transferred to the ICU. He said that the following morning at around 3.30 a.m. he received a call from the hospital asking him to come as her condition was critical.
On arrival at the hospital he said he was given time to be with his wife and she had requested him to help her sit up, but at 4.30 he was informed his wife had died.Mr. Rupasinghe said PHIs rarely visited the locality where they lived in Nugegoda. “The last time a PHI came was more than a month ago,” he said.
Meanwhile, negotiations between the Health Ministry and the Cuban embassy regarding the importation of the Bacillus Thuringiensis IIsraelensis (BTI) bacteria continue. The Ministry hopes to spray the bacteria in collaboration with the Colombo Municipal Council using helicopters and aircraft of the Air Force.
The Ministry spokesman said this was necessary as experts believed the mosquitoes bred fast in rooftop gutters of apartment buildings in the City.
Air Force spokesperson, Commander Andy Wijesooriya said the Air Force would extend its fullest co-operation to this project.
Health Ministry Deputy Director (Public Health) Dr. Sarath Amunugama who is in charge of the project, said discussions regarding the cost of spraying the BTI bacteria were ongoing.
He added the project was scheduled to be implemented between October and November before the North East Monsoon begins.
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