Bangladesh is currently facing its worst-ever dengue outbreak in history, with hospitals overwhelmed and the death toll rising. The outbreak has spread to every district, including rural areas, which is unprecedented. Experts are calling this situation an “epidemic” due to the severity and scale of the outbreak.
This year, the capital city of Dhaka has actually reported fewer cases compared to other parts of the country, with 65 percent of cases coming from outside the city. People from rural areas are flocking to hospitals in the cities for treatment, often facing financial difficulties due to the high cost of living in urban areas.
The healthcare system in Bangladesh is under extreme strain. Although the government has taken measures to combat dengue, the healthcare infrastructure is unable to cope with the large population. The severity of this outbreak can be attributed to several factors. Firstly, the prevalent strain of dengue this year is Den-2, which has affected over 75 percent of patients and is known to be more severe than other strains. Secondly, the outbreak in rural areas, where healthcare facilities are scarce and people are less aware of the seriousness of the disease, has contributed to the high number of fatalities.
Public health experts criticize the government’s response to the outbreak, stating that it should have been declared a public emergency earlier. However, government officials argue that they have already implemented measures such as opening special dengue wards and allocating emergency funds. Nevertheless, the outbreak has exposed the limitations of the healthcare system in a densely-populated country like Bangladesh.
As the dengue outbreak continues to take its toll, it is essential for the government and health authorities to prioritize public health and take immediate action to control the spread of the disease. Increased awareness, improved healthcare infrastructure, and effective mosquito control measures are crucial in preventing such devastating outbreaks in the future.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. What is dengue?
Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection that causes flu-like symptoms and can develop into severe dengue, a potentially life-threatening condition.
2. What are the symptoms of dengue?
Symptoms of dengue include high fever, severe headache, joint and muscle pain, rash, and mild bleeding.
3. How does dengue spread?
Dengue is primarily spread by the Aedes mosquito, which becomes a carrier of the virus after biting an infected person and subsequently transmits it to others it bites.
4. What can be done to prevent dengue?
Preventive measures for dengue include eliminating mosquito breeding sites, using mosquito repellents, wearing protective clothing, and implementing mosquito control measures such as insecticide spraying.
5. How is dengue treated?
There is no specific treatment for dengue, but medical care focuses on relieving symptoms and providing supportive care. Severe cases may require hospitalization and intensive care.
(Source: Al Jazeera)