LAHORE The dengue fever virus continues to haunt people in the provincial capital city as the menace took seven more lives on Thursday. The new victims included five women. Besides killing seven more, the ruthless virus also forced hundreds of more Lahorites to approach hospitals. Confirmation was given for 438 new positive cases, taking the overall tally to 26,715 in the City. Kaneez Bibi (55), a resident of Gujarpura, Malaika Bibi (55) of Bhatti Gate and Muhammad Riaz (70) of Rustam Park breathed their last at Services Hospital. Rubina Bibi (20) of Gujranwala and Fatima Bibi (24) of Wafaqi Colony lost their lives at Jinnah Hospital while Nimra Bibi (20) of Shahdara and Muhammad Asif (28) of Sodiwal died at Mayo Hospital. Out of 438 new dengue cases, 79 were tested positive at Mayo Hospital, 48 at Jinnah Hospital, 44 at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, 41 at Childrens Hospital, 37 at Shaikh Zayed Hospital, 30 at Services Hospital, 25 at Lahore General Hospital, 19 at Institute of Public Health while 115 were cases were reported from other public sector hospitals and private healthcare centres in the City. According to the Punjab Health Department, six people died in the province during the last 24 hours out of which five were from Lahore and one from Gujranwala. As such number of deaths due to dengue in Punjab is 217 including 193 in Lahore. The 267 new dengue cases were reported from across the province and out of these 248 were from Lahore. As such total number of dengue patients in the province has risen to 16288 including 14031 in Lahore. So far 16066 dengue patients have recovered and discharged from various hospitals in Punjab including 13766 from Lahore. Now 1353 patients are under treatment at different hospitals of the province including 1198 in Lahore. Briefing the newsmen at King Edward Medical University on Thursday, Director Health Information Management System (HIMS) Anwar Janjua said that Punjab Health Department has started to evolve a long term strategy for checking outbreak of viral diseases besides a plan of training general physicians regarding treatment of dengue patients. Vice Chancellor KEMU Prof Asad Aslam Khan, MS Mayo Hospital Dr Zahid Pervaiz and officers of health department were also present. Anwar Janjua said that measures regarding case response indoor spray and vector control were taken in 2813 houses in 95 union councils of different towns of Lahore during last 24 hours. Furthermore, 13 seminars were held for public awareness in different towns during which 16300 pamphlets were distributed among the participants, he added. He said that CBC blood test of 23631 patients was conducted at 10 blood centres set up in Lahore. VC KEMU Prof Asad Aslam informed that death rate was very low in the patients transferred from dengue ward to high dependency unit in Mayo Hospital. However, death rate is higher in those patients who are brought in a serious condition to the hospital with delay. He said that people should immediately shift serious patients to teaching hospitals instead of providing them treatment at home so that their life could be saved. MS Mayo Hospital Dr Zahid Pervaiz said that after consultation and training by Sri Lankan and Indonesian medical experts, junior doctors of teaching hospitals have also become experts in fluid management and in the light of guidelines best treatment was being provided to the dengue patients. He said that due to hard work and professional performance of doctors round the clock, thousands of dengue patients have recovered.