Islamabad/Rawalpindi - About 20 suspected dengue patients have been admitted to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) during the last three days.

The patients hailing from Rawalpindi, Islamabad and Haripur have been kept in isolation on the suspicions of contracting dengue virus. The twin cities have so far reported nearly 3,000 dengue cases with about 5 deaths. The deceased hailed from Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit-Baltistan, said Dr Javed Akram, Vice Chancellor of Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Medical University (SZABMU). Of them, 125 patients were treated for dengue fever at PIMS this season.

In Islamabad, he said, most of the cases were reported from sector G-7 and G-8 and rest of the patients were brought from the adjacent and nearby cities.

With the winter season is slowly setting in, the number of dengue cases will come down in the days to come as dengue mosquitoes can’t breed once the temperature falls, he said. The dengue season that lasts from August to till the last week of October is about to end in a week, said Dr Javed Akram.

He said though the season is about to end, precautionary measures must be taken to avoid breeding of mosquitoes in coming weeks. He stressed to keep the surroundings clean and dry and suggested to avoid stagnation of water at homes, surroundings and workplaces. He dispelled the misconception that the dengue mosquitoes only breed in clean water but it may lay eggs both in clean or muddy water. He also asked the people to use mosquito repellents, aerosols and coils and wear long sleeve shirts and use mosquito nets during sleeping hours to prevent mosquito bite.

Meanwhile, Punjab Chief Secretary Khizar Hayyat Gondal has directed the health department officials to carry out anti-dengue fogging in all the high risk union councils to stop the outbreak of dengue fever. He added that the secretaries of all the high risk UCs should monitor the fogging on daily basis. The chief secretary also asked the district government and police to take strict action against those who are launching attacks on anti-dengue campaign teams in the city.

He also instructed the managing director of Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA) to repair the rusty and broken water supply pipelines immediately to stop growth of dengue larva in the city. Khizar Hayyat Gondal said this while chairing a meeting held at Commissioner Office to review the arrangements being made by the district government to overcome outbreak of dengue here yesterday.

Addressing the meeting, the chief secretary asked the doctors to provide adequate health facilities to the dengue patients in the allied hospitals. He said the government is making all-out efforts to control outbreak of dengue.

Earlier, Commissioner Rawalpindi Zahid Saeed briefed the meeting about the efforts made by the city district government to control dengue outbreak.

Meanwhile, Advisor to Chief Minister Punjab for Dengue Control Dr Waseem Akram has urged the female anti-dengue teams to discharge duties in Rawalpindi city and cantonment areas during indoor surveillance with professional commitment to overcome dengue virus. Dr Waseem Akram was addressing female workers in a training session organised by Local Government & Community Development Department and City District Government with cooperation of Plan Pakistan and Water Aid yesterday.

Dr Waseem Akram said that although dengue workers are performing excellent job in their respective areas, exclusive training sessions have been arranged to improve their professional skills.

Additional Deputy Commissioner (General) Imran Qureshi asked participants of the training programme to lay special emphasis on vector surveillance in their areas and ensure that larvae eggs must be destroyed before the temperature fell down in next couple of weeks.