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LAHORE: As part of measures to control dengue, the Punjab government on Thursday took important decisions including imposing a ban on wearing half-sleeve shirts in parks and public places.

The decisions were made at a meeting jointly presided over by provincial Health Minister Dr Akhtar Malik and Chief Secretary Abdullah Khan Sumbal, at the Civil Secretariat.

The meeting reviewed the strategy to contain the spread of dengue, and discussed a proposal to impose heavy fines over larvae detection. Other decisions included launch of a special campaign to increase public awareness, holding of seminars in educational institutes, display of banners at under-construction buildings and expediting community mobilization.

Expressing concern over the increase in dengue cases in Gujranwala, Provincial Minister Akhtar Malik issued instructions to the commissioner and deputy commissioner to take immediate steps. He said that all the commissioners and deputy commissioners should monitor the anti-dengue activities themselves.

He added that the next 15 days are very important in terms of dengue control and that the field teams of the health department should intensify indoor and outdoor surveillance, besides submitting a report on fogging and larva culling at hotspots on a daily basis.

Chief Secretary Abdullah Sumbal directed the officer to show no leniency over violation of dengue SOPs and speed up crackdown in high risk districts. He said that collective efforts must be continued to eradicate dengue.

Secretary Primary and Secondary Healthcare Dr Irshad Ahmed gave a detailed briefing at the meeting. He said that the dengue expert team has visited high-risk districts including Rawalpindi and re-evaluated the micro plans.

This year, 5981 confirmed dengue cases and eight deaths have been reported. 158 people have been arrested and 778 cases have been registered in different cities for violating dengue SOPs. The secretaries of the relevant departments and the health officials attended the meeting while all divisional commissioners and deputy commissioners participated through video link.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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