A single mosquito is responsible for the all the malaria cases in the city. That’s what experts from the National Vector Borne Disease Control (NVBDC), National Institute of Malaria Research (NIMR), Goa and the Directorate of Health Services, Maharashtra would have you believe.
The three teams were in the city from June 21 to June 23. Around 14 officials carried out night-long surveillance in the city’s worst-hit wards; searching for mosquitoes with the help of torches. “In a span of 12 hours daily we used to hunt for mosquito or larvae,” said an official with the state government who was part of the surveillance.
The team did rounds of Kurla, Goregaon, Byculla and Worli. “Locations at Chitra nagar, MHADA slums at Santosh Nagar (Goregaon), Dhobhi Ghat (Mahalaxmi), NM Joshi Marg (Byculla), Makarwali and HDIL construction site (Kurla) were given key attention in the visit,” said a senior civic official.
The teams found one mosquito at a construction site in Chitranagar, Goregaon and one larva at NM Joshi Marg in Byculla and another at an HDIL construction site in Kurla respectively.
The experts submitted a report based on their investigations to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Wednesday.
This month alone, the city has registered 3,520 positive cases of malaria. On an average, 100 cases of malaria are admitted in the civic run hospitals every day.
If experts in medical services and malaria are to be believed, then the city is under attack from a single mosquito. The wizards from the National Vector Borne Disease Control (NVBDC) under Ministry of health and family welfare, National Institute of Malaria Research (NIMR), Goa and Directorate of Health Services, Maharashtra have backed claims of this astonishing fact in their report.
Three teams from the renowned institutes decided to survey the city on the basis of the baseline survey of the construction site carried out by the BMC. They were in the city from June 21 to June 23. Around 14 experts carried out night-long surveillance in the city’s worst-hit wards. The modus operandi of the experts to detect the presence of mosquitoes in the ward was to roam around with a torch in their hand. “We were doing rounds of the most-afflicted wards till the break of dawn. The inspection would start at around 6pm in the evening and went on till 6 am. We used to hunt for mosquito or larvae in the span of 12 hours,” said an expert with the state government who was also part of the night long surveillance.
The team did rounds of Kurla, Goregaon, Byculla and Worli. “Locations at Chitra Nagar, MHADA slums at Santosh Nagar (Goregaon), Dhobhi Ghat (Mahalaxmi), NM Joshi Marg (Byculla), Makarwali and HDIL construction site (Kurla) were given the most attention in these surveillances,” said a senior civic official.
Based on the findings of the visits, the teams compiled a report and submitted it to the BMC on Wednesday. The BMC report says that only a mosquito and two larvae were found.
That single mosquito was found at a construction site in Chitra Nagar at Goregaon. And one larva was detected at NM Joshi Marg in Byculla and the second one was found at HDIL site in Kurla.
“The report filed by the team explains the reasons for the reducing number cases of malaria in the city. The findings also reveal that mosquito breeding has decreased tremendously,” said Manisha Mhaiskar, additional municipal commissioner (health). According to civic estimates by the public health department, over 1.4 lakhs blood samples of malaria patients were taken till June. The slide positivity rate (SPR) of the samples stood at a low of 1.9. The SPR last year for the same duration stood at 7.1.
Inspite of these claims of only one mosquito being found in the city, June, alone, has around 3,520 positive cases of malaria on record. The positive cases of malaria stood at 4,503 in May.