Rawalpindi-In response to the ongoing dengue outbreak during its peak season, the caretaker Punjab Health Minister, Dr. Jamal Nasir, emphasized the need for swift and comprehensive measures to combat the deadly virus.
He urged the Islamabad and Rawalpindi administrations to work together closely, conducting joint anti-dengue activities for three to four days each week in adjacent areas. This collaborative approach aimed to eliminate any jurisdictional ambiguities that might hinder the efforts.
Dr. Jamal Nasir presided over an anti-dengue meeting alongside Commissioner Rawalpindi Division, Liaqat Ali Chattha, where he stressed the importance of not allowing the concurrent polio campaign to overshadow the anti-dengue activities. He encouraged the health department to allocate additional staff from allied departments if required.
A significant aspect of the discussion revolved around the outsourcing of all graveyards in Rawalpindi, with the contractor’s payment contingent upon third-party validation by the DGRDA of work done on the graveyards and Nullah Lai.
The meeting saw the participation of key figures, including Station Commander Brigadier Salman, Deputy Commissioner Rawalpindi Dr Hasan Waqar Cheema, Director General Rawalpindi Development Authority Saif Anwar Jappa, District Health Officer Islamabad Dr Zaeem, and the CEOs of Health, among others. Deputy Commissioners from Attock, Jhelum, and Chakwal also joined via video link.
Commissioner Rawalpindi Liaqat Ali Chatha directed 19 private hospitals to establish special dengue wards and tasked the health commission with ensuring their compliance through inspections and notices. He emphasized the importance of continuing anti-dengue operations with strict adherence to SOPs.
The meeting also emphasized the need for maintaining cleanliness in homes, offices, and surroundings while preventing stagnant water, which serves as an ideal breeding ground for dengue-carrying mosquitoes. Additionally, departments were instructed to mobilize Android users and focus on clearing grass and trees in educational institutions while preventing the accumulation of standing water.
The CEO of Health provided an update on the dengue situation, reporting 272 cases with 232 patients discharged after successful treatment, leaving 40 confirmed dengue patients receiving treatment in Rawalpindi hospitals. The health department’s teams continued both indoor and outdoor operations, checking over 46 lakh houses, with 29,797 houses testing positive since January 1. Similarly, they inspected over 18 lakh spots in hotspots, identifying 5463 positive locations, where necessary actions were taken.
Strict actions were taken against those who violated dengue SOPs, with 43 FIRs, 05 challans, and the sealing of 03 buildings within the last 24 hours, resulting in fines amounting to Rs. 61,000. These measures aimed to hold individuals accountable for their actions and reduce the threat of dengue to the community.