News (28)

Tuesday, 28 January 2014 04:47

Dengue update

During the last 12 months of the year 2013, 31876 suspected dengue cases have been reported to the Epidemiology Unit from all over the island.
Latest Disease Trends,

Approximately 51.55% of dengue cases were reported from the Western province. The highest numbers of dengue cases were reported during the third week of January.

This situation warrants regular removal of possible mosquito breeding sites from the environment. It is also important to seek medical attention in the event of fever by day three of the illness.


The spread of dengue still remains at a dangerous level as 293 patients were reported from the 1st of this month up until today only from Colombo.
4 dengue related deaths have also been reported. Accordingly Chief Medical Officer of the Colombo Municipal council Dr Pradeep Kariyawasam stated that the public should be aware to combat the dengue menace. He also stated that a special programme will be held from the 8th of February to create awareness among the public to combat the dengue menace.


Tuesday, 28 January 2014 03:12

Dengue risk heightens in Colombo

Several areas in Colombo are faced with a risk of reaching epidemic levels. Dehiwala, Katubedda and Moratuwa MOH areas are undergoing an increase in the spread of Dengue, while Kohuwala, Kaduwela, Kolonnawa and Angoda MOH Areas are reported to reach epidemic levels in the near future.

The Ministry of Health will be implementing a special programme in schools located in major cities prone to dengue.

The Health Ministry advise to use only paracetamol as a form of medication and not to use other form of medication for fever without medical advise as such drugs can cause internal bleeding in dengue patients.

The public are also requested to maintain clean surroundings and to seek immediate medical assistance if fever persists for more than two days,

According to the Epidemiology Unit of the Health Ministry, compared to 2012, there has been a decline of 25 percent in the year 2013 in the number of Dengue patients being reported.




Ayurveda doctor Tharanga Kumari Wickramasuriya of Herumanagoda, Ambalangoda was felicitated for her invention of an Ayurveda drug to heal dengue fever. The ceremony was held under the patronage of Southern Province Chief Minister Shan Wijayalal de Silva.

The drug invented following years of experiments by Dr. Tharanga has been approved and recommended by the Ayurveda Medical Board as a drug for dengue.

Thousands of dengue patients have been successfully healed by this Ayurveda treatment. Dr. Tharanga also invented a drug to raise the immunity of HIV affected patients by 100 percent which has also been recommended by the Ayurvedic Medical Board.

A past pupil of Aluthwala Maha Vidyalaya and Galle Sanghamitta Balika Vidyalaya, she graduated from the Sri Lanka Ayurveda Medical College. Her father is also a traditional snake-bite physician.

Provincial Councillors and Southern Province officials participated in the ceremony.


Tuesday, 05 November 2013 03:57

Access Eng. initiates Dengue awareness program

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Access Engineering took the initiative to identify and eradicate dengue breeding grounds in and around schools located in Colombo which come under the purview of the Colombo Municipal Council initially eight schools (Ladies College, Nalanda College, St. Joseph's College, St. Bridget's Convent, Royal College, Thurston College, Bishop's College, D.S Senanayake College) were chosen for the program. The initial awareness and inspection program was conducted in and around Ladies College in Colombo last week and will be continued with a follow-up session today (November 1).

The school premises was carefully examined and necessary action taken to stop potentialbreeding grounds and clear areas where threats may occur in the future. During this programmme, a total of 203 premises in the surrounding areas of Ladies College were inspected and 54 potential breeding sites and 20 current breeding sites were located while the Public Health Inspectors issued 74 notices to residents in these areas.

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Before the program kicked off, a briefing was held at the Colombo Municipal Council premises where Dr. Pradeep Kariyawasam, Chief Medical Officer of the CMC, gave an informative introduction about the issues of dengue and the benefits to people by this program.

He thanked Access Engineering for this ground breaking program which will entice others in the corporate sector to follow.

Sri Lanka experienced the largest epidemic of dengue fever with as many as 70,000 cases and almost 600 deaths during the years 2009 and 2010. The Health Ministry of the government of Sri Lanka, undertook measures to contain the dengue epidemic by establishing the 'Presidential Task Force for Dengue Control' that ensured much needed collaboration and coordination.

However, the dengue epidemic is on the rise again and Access Engineering PLC together with the Colombo Municipal Council and Environmental Police recently implemented a program to counter the spread of this disease. Employees of Access Engineering, together with an Environmental Police officers headed by Chanaka Iddamalgoda Chief Inspector of Environmental Police and Mangala Dehideniya, HQI Kollupitiya,

Kandula Wickramasinghe, Chief PHI, CMC, Dr. Sri Parthapan MOH with Health Professionals and staff attached to the Ministry of Health visited many residents of the area to inspect their premises and gave important tips on how to prevent dengue breeding areas and good practices for a healthy atmosphere. Every location which was safe and matched the safe criteria, was given a 'My Home is Dengue Free' sticker of approval from the Health Ministry.

Today the same team would revisit these premises to monitor the progress and take appropriate action.

Wednesday, 09 October 2013 03:42

National Dengue Prevention Week to commence


National Dengue Prevention Week is to commence today. The Ministry of Health says that the aim of this initiative is to eradicate Dengue and will be in effect till October 13.
The Dengue Eradication Week organised by the Presidential Task Force for the prevention of Dengue mosquitoes is to commence on  Monday. Incidentally this is the second eradication week to take place this year.
The Acting Director of the Dengue Eradication Unit of the Ministry of Health, Dr. U.S.B Ranasinghe said that this programme is carried out with the assistance from the Ministry of Education, Municipal and Provincial Councils, Environment, Health, Youth Affairs, Defence, State Administration and other ministries .Dr. U.S.B Ranasinghe added that the number of Dengue cases have increased within the past months as a result of the rainy season, Ministry of Health data shows that 85 percent of Dengue breeding sites are found in households.


Wednesday, 09 October 2013 03:34

Drastic drop in Dengue patients, deaths


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There is a significant drop in the number of dengue cases this year compared to September 2012. There was a drop of around 10,000 dengue cases last month relative to September 2012, a Health Ministry spokesman said.

According to the spokesman, the number of dengue cases reported last month was 24,384 while 35,000 dengue cases were reported in September last year.

There is a decrease in dengue deaths too. A total of 80 dengue deaths were reported from January to September last year, but this year only 64 deaths had been reported due to the dreaded disease.

Over 47 percent of dengue cases so far in 2013 have been reported from the Western Province. Over 85 percent of mosquito breeding places are found in garbage or discarded items. Most of the discarded items are usually found near residences.

Around 27 MOH divisions in 10 districts have been identified as high risk areas.

They are Colombo, Gampaha, Kalutara, Kandy, Kurnegala, Puttalam, Ratnapura, Kegalle, Jaffna and Baticaloa, he said.

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena has declared the National Mosquito Control Week from October 7 to 13 countrywide. "The public and all state and private institutions are called upon to destroy all mosquito breeding sites located within their properties in order to lower the dengue risk," he added.


Monday, 23 September 2013 10:32

Dengue death rate reducing



The dengue death rate in Sri Lanka is 0.3 percent at the moment and it is expected to decrease further to 0.1 percent by 2016, a Health Ministry spokesperson said.

"People have shown a resistance to the first type of dengue virus that exists in Sri Lanka. But the second type of dengue virus is now spreading in other countries posing a threat to Sri Lanka again," the spokesperson added.

Immediate medical attention from a state hospital or a qualified doctor for any type of fever is the only way of avoiding complications and death, he added.

The Health Ministry recently provided 10 Ultra Sound Scanners worth Rs 20 million to 10 Teaching Hospitals to be installed at High Dependency Units (HDU) set up to treat dengue patients.

According to the spokesperson, the Ultra Sound Scanners will only be used to treat dengue patients.

The ministry has already established 100 HDUs in state hospitals to treat dengue patients.

The HDUs have ICU beds and all other medical equipment to prevent patients from falling into a critical condition with Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF) and Dengue Shock Syndrome. Using Ultra Sound Scanners, specialist doctors can identify the symptoms of DHF or Dengue Shock in advance, he said.


Monday, 16 September 2013 04:41

End dengue menace as soon as possible


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A President Mahinda Rajapaksa has instructed Health Ministry Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayatilleke to end the dengue menace soon no matter what the costs are, a Health Ministry spokesman said. According to the spokesman, President Rajapaksa had instructed that immediate measures be taken to eradicate the causes for dengue fever and he also assured that the government will allocate funds. The Health Ministry has already commenced countrywide dengue eradication programs.

The total number of dengue cases reported from Sri Lanka during the past eight months is over 22,000 while over 80 deaths have also been reported during the same period.

The most affected districts are Colombo (6,909 cases), Gampaha ( 2,623 cases) and Kurunegala (2,338 cases). The CMC recorded 2,137 dengue cases during the past eight months, he said.

"It is possible that the dengue prevalence may increase with the on going rainy whether conditions and therefore the public should destroy all mosquito breeding sites located inside buildings and in the surrounding environment.

Special attention should be paid to clean blocked gutters, burn leaves etc. Prompt medical treatment should be sought from a state hospital if any person shows symptoms of fever for more than one or two days," he added.


Monday, 16 September 2013 04:33

MRI unearths new Dengue breeding grounds



A recent research conducted by the Medical Research Institute (MRI) found that when people destroy artificial mosquito breeding sites including yogurt cups, tins etc, the mosquitoes go to natural breeding places such as tree hollows and leaves of certain varieties of trees, a Health Ministry spokesman said.

The spokesman said although people destroy artificial mosquito breeding sites created by them as much as possible, the mosquito density goes up all the time increasing the dengue risk. “Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena last year ordered the MRI to conduct a research on this issue. Accordingly, the MRI conducted a research and found that mosquitoes breed more in tree hollows and leaves of trees of a specific variety,” he said.

The PH value of the water found inside tree hollows and leaves was 6.9 percent (an increase of 0.4 percent). The hollows of Delonix Regia trees, trees such as bromeliad, Pandanus, Alocasia, pineapple, cut bamboo trees and Drasania provide ideal breeding places for mosquitoes, the spokesman said.

The research team inspected 766 natural mosquito breeding places and found that 12 species of mosquitoes breed in them. Over 47.2 percent of bromeliads had dengue mosquito larvae and 42.2 percent of Delonix Regia tree hollow had dengue mosquito larvae. Over 40 percent of pineapple trees had dengue mosquito larvae, he said.

Over 55 percent of Delonix Regia tree hollows had dengue mosquito larvae. The MRI requested the public to destroy trees which hold water in them and fill the hollow with sand or cement plaster. No tree should be left to hold water in them because even a teaspoon of water inside a tree hollow or between leaves can provide an ideal breeding place for dengue mosquitoes, he added.

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