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14 dead as Mumbai battles dengue

14 dead as Mumbai battles dengue
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In Mumbai, 14 people have died from Dengue this year and nearly 650 cases have been reported in Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) run hospitals...

Mumbai: In Mumbai, 14 people have died from Dengue this year and nearly 650 cases have been reported in Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) run hospitals alone. Although it has not been declared an epidemic yet, public health experts say the huge spurt in the number of cases is worrisome.

Dr Om Shrivastav, Director of Department of Infectious Diseases at Jaslok Hospital, told NDTV, "It certainly has the proportion to be defined as an epidemic. Private practioners and laboratories also have seen a rise in cases and the total number of cases are more than what is being reported."

The alarm bells are ringing as the number of cases has jumped four times since last year - while 150 cases were reported in BMC run hospitals in 2013, this year that number has crossed 650.

The BMC admits it has a situation at hand. Additional Municipal Commissioner Sanjay Deshmukh told NDTV, "We are near the end of November and we still haven't seen a drop in temperature. This has led to an increase in the dengue cases as it is the conducive atmosphere for dengue larvae to grow."

The BMC has now deployed 900 people to fumigate 12 lakh households across the city. The civic body is spraying anti-larvae oil on open water bodies and equipping hospitals with doctors and medicines to handle dengue cases.

A door-to-door campaign to remove stagnating water has also been launched.

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