Pakistan Officials Move To Contain Dengue Epidemic That Has Infected Thousands

“On top of a raging insurgency and devastating seasonal floods, Pakistan is reeling from a particularly acute outbreak of dengue fever that has left local authorities scrambling to contain the epidemic” and has put a strain on the health care system, the Washington Post reports, adding that the disease “has already infected thousands across the country and killed as many as two dozen people.” Local government officials have “reacted frantically to the daily increase of cases with a series of measures including school closures, free treatment for dengue patients and large fumigation drives. But some say the response is inadequate and authorities should have focused more efforts on prevention,” the newspaper writes.

According to the Washington Post, “The disease makes regular appearances at this time of year after monsoon rains have provided plenty of breeding sites for mosquitoes. But this year’s outbreak is particularly virulent, especially in Lahore, the country’s second-largest city and capital of Punjab Province, where most of the cases have been reported (Brulliard, 9/19). “The number of dengue patients has soared past 7000 in Punjab out of which 6000 are from Lahore alone,” the Pakistan Observer writes (Ahmed, 9/19).