Altogether 3434 students of government-run residential schools in Kandhamal district [Odisha state] have tested positive for malaria.
"The affected students have been administered drugs. The health officials are keeping a watch on their condition," said collector (Kandhamal) Yamini Sarangi.
Official sources said blood samples of 19 767 students of 214 residential schools run by ST [scheduled tribes] and SC [scheduled castes] development department in the district were tested between [6 Jul and 3 Aug 2015].
The collector directed the health officials to conduct the tests after 65 of 143 students of a primary residential school at Ranipathara in Khajuria block [Odisha] were found suffering from the vector-borne disease last month [July 2015]. The incidence is more in Khajuripada, Phiringia, Daringbadi blocks [Odisha], the sources said. On [Fri 14 Aug 2015], the collector launched a 3-month malaria, dengue, and diarrhoea awareness drive and said the focus will be on schoolchildren.
"The accredited social health activists and other health workers will follow up the programme. They will immediately refer such cases to government hospitals," said chief district medical officer Sapaneswar Gadanayak. The students will be sensitized on the causes of the vector-borne disease, he added.
The programme will start with indoor residual spraying (IRS) in all hostels and schools to check malaria outbreak. "We will provide medicated mosquito nets to the inmates and persuade them to use these," said district consultant, National Vector Borne Diseases Control Programme, Kumuda Chandra Sahu.
Kandhamal has witnessed 2 malaria deaths this year . 6 persons had died of the vector-borne disease the previous year .
-- Communicated by: ProMED-mail from HealthMap Alerts