Delhi to mount stringent monitoring for Zika virus

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New Delhi, Feb 1 (IANS) Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain on Tuesday said the government would carry out stringent monitoring in the wake of mosquito-borne Zika virus.

“Till now no case of Zika virus has been found in Delhi. But as a precautionary measure we held a meeting a few days ago and decided to conduct a stringent monitoring in the city,” the minister said.

Zika virus is transmitted by the bite of Aedes aegypti mosquito which breeds in water-storage containers. Like dengue, it is a day-biting mosquito, meaning it is most active during daylight.

World Health Organization has declared emergency over the “explosive” spread of the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

The Centre on Tuesday issued detailed guidelines for combating the disease, including a travel advisory that asks pregnant women to either defer or cancel their travel to the affected areas of the world.

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Jain said the symptoms of the disease are more like flu. India is prone to Zika because Aedes aegypti mosquito is found here which also causes dengue.

“We have also sought directions from the central government to deal with Zika virus. Every needed step will be taken in accordance with the Centre’s guidelines for the disease,” the minister said.

Meanwhile, Jain also announced 150 polyclinics would be opened in the city by the year-end. Of these, 65 polyclinics will be opened within four months.

“These polyclinics will be opened in the buildings of the existing dispensaries and will be attached to the government hospitals of the respective areas,” he added.

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