KARACHI    -    Commissioner of Karachi, Iftikhar Shallwani has issued an high alert to the districts’ administration as well to the municipalities to help combat dengue outbreak in the metropolis.

Chairing a meeting in his office, he said equal attention was needed to be paid to control the menace of stray dogs with a pragmatic approach to protect citizens against rabies.

He reiterated that Karachi administration, municipal authorities, health department as well as administration of hospitals (particularly the major facilities) functional in private and public sector have to join hands to protect people against largely avoidable health conditions.

The meeting decided that all deputy commissioners will form teams focused on preventive measures encompassing awareness among the public in general and mandatory provision to get involved builders as well tire shop owners in elimination of breeding points for mosquitoes causing dengue.

The deputy commissioners were assigned to develop teams who may not only pursue the builders, tire shop owners and others to ensure water may not remain stagnant at their places of work or surrounding but regular and quality fumigation was also ensured. Mass awareness campaign was agreed to be undertaken by the health department of provincial government as well as by KMC and other local body organizations.

It was further decided that all the relevant departments KMC, DMCs and Cantonment Boards would make all out efforts ensuring that dengue fever patients were adequately managed with equal attention to protect them against complications and in case arriving with severity are necessarily provided with relevant facilities.

Commissioner Karachi, consequent to a detailed presentation by senior medical expert and a specialist in infectious diseases, Dr Nasim Salahuddin said Karachi administration in coordination with health department and KMC would immediately embark on a campaign to sensitize citizens about protection as well as symptoms of the infection and interventions that were simple as the disease itself was largely self limiting.

Deputy Commissioners were assigned with the special duties to develop coordination with the concerned departments and assist them in carrying out their efforts effective to check the spread of dengue cases.

The meeting among others was also attended by provincial secretary for health, Saeed Awan, KMC Director of Health, Dr Salma Kauser, KMC Director Research Mansoor Qazi, Project Manager for Dengue Control Programme besides medical superintendents and directors of all major public sector hospitals including those managed by KMC and Cantonment Boards.

Dr Naseem Salahuddin, Head, Department of Infectious Diseases at The Indus Hospital (TIH) briefed the meeting about the rising number of stray dogs in the city and the dog bite cases being reported in the province.

The meeting decided that dog bite issues will be addressed on priority bases and that vaccination of stray dogs would be carried under a comprehensive plan under the guidance of TIH’s Department of Infectious Diseases, as per advice of WHO.