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RAWALPINDI: The first dengue case was reported at the Holy Family Hospital (HFH) on Tuesday.

Mohammad Nafees, 25 and hailing from Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), is said to have gotten the virus in Saudi Arabia from where he came on Sunday. He came to the hospital with a high fever.

“He said he came to the hospital directly from the airport,” a senior doctor said.

He said the patient was put in an isolation ward and was in stable condition. Laboratory tests have confirmed the diagnosis.

The doctor said this is the first dengue patient in the hospital this season.

“Most dengue patients last year were from Islamabad and AJK and there were few locals,” he said.

Health authorities have asked for work on the elimination of dengue mosquitoes from the city areas to be sped up as the recent rains have increased chances of the disease spreading.

An emergency meeting of the district administration was held in the deputy commissioner’s office on the directives of DC Talat Mehmood Gondal in this regard.

According to Additional Deputy Commissioner Saima Younas, more that 734 suspected patients from across Rawalpindi city had reported to the three government-run hospitals but none of them had been diagnosed with the virus as yet.

She also stressed on speeding up efforts such as fumigating graveyards and junkyards. She said the recent rains have made the environment favourable for the breeding of dengue mosquitoes which means teams have to go the extra mile.

Ms Younas directed the Rawalpindi Waste Management Company and the Rawalpindi Municipal Corporation to cover potholes on roads and streets and to drain out the water accumulated on roads and streets.

Briefing the committee, health officials said dengue larvae was found in 148 different commercial and residential areas in the city and that health departments conducted fogging in 44 locations.

They aid an anti-dengue campaign has been launched in the city and cantonment areas and that the teams make door-to-door visits to eliminate dengue mosquitoes.

Published in Dawn, May 16th, 2018