The Health Ministry has sounded a ‘Red Alert’ on a possible outbreak of dengue in the month of April as extreme heat in the day time and occasional drizzle during the night were contributing factors to a sharp increase of the disease.
A discussion at the Health Ministry chaired by Minister Maithripala Sirisena was told that the month of April has shown a steady increase of dengue patients in the last five years and this year will not be an exception. He said the Additional Secretary Dr. Palitha Mahipala has been instructed to alert all MOH offices island wide to launch programmes to tackle the possible outbreak of dengue this month. Dr. Mahipala pointed out that the drizzle in the night and heat in the day time has created ideal breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
The Health Ministry has identified ten districts and 18 MOH areas as high risk areas of dengue. The Districts are Colombo, Ratnapura, Kegalle, Gampaha, Kalutara, Hambantota, Batticaloa, Trincomalee, Puttalam and Kurunegala.
The Health Minister said an additional stock of drugs and medical equipment will be sent to hospitals located in the high risk MOH areas with instructions to doctors to be especially vigilant about patients with fever.