The city of Bengaluru has enough reasons to worry this monsoon. With diseases like Dengue and Chikungunya taking a toll over public healthcare, the health department predictions add to the worry. According to a report by the Bangalore Mirror, close to 1.12 crore people are at the risk of contracting the diseases. Assuming Karnataka's population to be 6.1 crore, this puts one in every six persons at risk.
It is to be noted that risk is calculated based on where most cases have been reported from. In Bengaluru, more than one lakh people are in the high-risk zone. In fact, doctors say most of the cases have been reported from CV Raman Nagar, Varthur and Koramangala.
It is said that in Udupi, close to 10 lakh people are under threat, followed by Gadag where 9 lakh people are at risk. Mysuru, once the cleanest city in the state also reports 3 lakh people at risk. According to data collected by the health and family welfare department, more than 1 lakh people are at the risk of contracting the diseases in most districts in the state.
As per government data, till October 19, there were 13,540 confirmed cases of dengue in the state and around 2,184 confirmed cases of chikungunya. The number of deaths due to dengue in the state since January this year stands at 5. However, experts from the city believe that this is severely under reported.
Experts believe that government agencies are hiding the data to cover up the state apathy. It is being said that the data collected by them were gathered only from Tertiery care units, as a result of which many private hospitals and laboratories carrying out confirmation tests were left out.
Speaking to Bangalore Mirror, Dr KN Manjunath, consultant internal medicine, Vikram Hospital, said ,"Each day, I receive around six to seven patients suffering from dengue at our facility that has around 125 beds. I am unable to comment how the government data puts the number of confirmed dengue cases at just 13,540.”
He further added, "Dengue has become hyper endemic in the city and civic agencies have failed to contain the breeding of mosquitoes. As a result, whenever there is rain, mosquitoes flourish."
Dr Pankaj Singhai, senior consultant, internal medicine, Manipal Hospital, blames the rampant construction around the city, which prove to be a breeding ground for the mosquitoes. He said, "One of the main reasons we are seeing a surge in these diseases is the poor infrastructure. Every day, a new pit is dug and when it rains these pits turns into breeding grounds. This, coupled with the apathy of civic agencies, has done it."
The state government data said that there have only been 5 deaths due to dengue, but according to the data collected by the Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health, out of 504 children who died at the facility, around 51 succumbed to dengue.