Dengue has taken thousands of innocent lives in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka being a tropical country and situated near the equator has stumbled into a situation where eradication of dengue has become a myth. No matter how hard we try, still we hear about people losing their lives due to this epidemic. 70% of countries situated near the equator has the problem of eradicating dengue on their hands and thousands of unsolved issues relating to the epidemic. In 2010, 192 deaths were reported in Sri Lanka with 26,824 confirmed cases of dengue patients. Approximately 48.58% of dengue cases were reported from the Western province. The highest numbers of dengue cases were reported during the third week of January which is normally regarded as one of the months in which we receive heavy rainfall.
It is a fact unknown that the Health Authorities in Sri Lanka conducted programs to educate the public about the dengue epidemic and created awareness programs to reduce the problems created through this deadly epidemic. In 2013 developed health facilities were introduced in many areas to support the process of eradication of dengue. Industrial sites received special attention from the health authorities as many breeding grounds of the dengue mosquito were discovered among them. Yet the number of lives taken away from this deadly epidemic still soars high. Specially infant mortality has increased during the past few years due to dengue.
Recently a mosquito specie named “Topomia” was discovered from the Kalutara District by the Medical Research Institute of Borella. This mosquito feeds on the larva of Dengue mosquitoes and not on human blood. It also feeds on nectar and extractions from plants. It is revealed that this specie could be used successfully and easily in the process of eradicating dengue. Although this specie was discovered in other countries, this is the first time it was found in Sri Lanka. The Research Institute together with the support of the WHO plans to increase the population of this specie while propagating breeding grounds for them. The mosquito specie is to be released to the environment after further experiments. This would be a giant step in the eradication of dengue in Sri Lanka and will be a more reliable method.
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