Dengue Grips India’s Uttar Pradash

Patients receive treatment at Sarojini Naidu Children’s Hospital, in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh, India, reeling from a dengue outbreak. September 10, 2021. Image: Amarjeet Kumar Singh/Anadolu Agency via Getty
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Patients receive treatment at Sarojini Naidu Children’s Hospital, in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh, India, reeling from a dengue outbreak. September 10, 2021. Image: Amarjeet Kumar Singh/Anadolu Agency via Getty

A dengue fever outbreak is believed to have caused the deaths of 114 people—including 88 children—and sickening ~12,000 people since the beginning of the month, The Times of India reports.

Dengue is the confirmed cause of death in just 3 of the cases, Reuters notes, with a comprehensive audit underway.

Hospitals are straining to find beds, and people are scrambling to find affordable treatment for relatives.

Many children may have died after their parents first took them to fake medical practitioners, a government official speaking anonymously told Reuters.

The government war on mosquitoes includes:

  • Stepped-up fogging and door-to-door efforts to get rid of stagnant water. 
  • Deploying “killer fish”—mosquito-gobbling gambusia that can eat up to 150 mosquito larvae in just 8 hours—in ponds and lakes, The Telegraph reports.


The COVID effect: 

  • The pandemic halted mosquito elimination drives in much of India.
  • Many patients have avoided seeking care out of fear of contracting COVID-19 in hospitals.
  • Hospitals are stretched, with resources flowing heavily to COVID-19.


The outbreak marks Uttar Pradash’s worst outbreak in years; last year, the death toll for the entire country was a multi-year low of 56. 

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