Central, eastern India worst hit by vector borne diseases

Last Updated: Dec 27, 2011, 21:33 PM IST

New Delhi: States in central and eastern India have been the worst hit by malaria this year prompting the Health ministry to concentrate on these parts as its strategy to control the high incidence of vector borne diseases in 2012.

As part of its vector-borne-diseases control strategy, the ministry has decided to distribute 6.5 million long lasting insecticide net (LLIN) in these areas.

"A review of the vector-borne-diseases across the country for this year showed that states like Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and north-eastern states had reported high cases of malaria. Realising these as the problematic areas we have decided that for the year 2012 the high focus will be on these states," a Health ministry official said.

With over 2,50,000 people testing positive for malaria, Orissa topped the chart for reporting the highest number of malaria cases. This was followed by 95,000 cases reported from Chhattisgarh and over 61,000 registered in Madhya Pradesh.

"Earlier we used insecticide-treated nets (ITN) but now we are going for LLINs. These nets treated with insecticides disable and kill the vector mosquitoes which transmit malaria.

ITN needed to be re-treated regularly, while LLINs are designed to be effective without re-treatment for the life of the net," he said.

Malaria is a potentially life threatening parasitic disease caused by the infective bite of Anopheles mosquito.

The symptoms of malaria include fever, headache, vomiting and other flu-like symptoms. The parasite infects and destroys red blood cells resulting in easy fatigue-ability due to anemia, fits or convulsions and loss of consciousness.

Malaria in pregnancy poses a substantial risk to the mother, the fetus and the newborn infant.