Health dept plans to use ducks to combat dengue


The Rawalpindi district has put together a ‘micro-level anti-dengue plan’ that includes measures such as targeting ponds and other breeding grounds for larvae which would be authorised by end January and put into effect on February 6, the health department said Friday.

The plan, which includes encouraging breeding ducks as a countermeasure, has been devised due to a year-on-year increase in the number of cases. However, the district did not report any dengue-related deaths in 2023, having had reported fatalities a year earlier.

Farmers in rural regions will be encouraged to raise ducks if there are more open ponds in these places, it said, adding that domestic ducks prefer mosquito larvae as their diet.


Read: Dengue ebbs at turn of month

This year, 2,686 patients were treated for dengue at government hospitals. Meanwhile, private hospitals reported at least 20,000 patients who came in with dengue-like symptoms, while government hospitals also reported 17,418 suspected cases who were kept under observation but did not test positive for dengue.

The department added that designated dengue wards were set up. In 14 small and large hospitals in the Rawalpindi area, 228 beds were set aside for dengue patients. On December 1, only 23 of those beds were used to treat patients, the department said.

The data shared by the department revealed 64 per cent of dengue patients to be male and 36 per cent female.

The department said it found more more dengue larvae than the previous year. The data showed that in 2021, a little over 40,000 locations, including residences and under-construction sites, were found to have dengue larvae. In 2022, the number of sites increased to 50,769 houses.

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