HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: Fifteen cholera cases have been confirmed in Kathmandu district since the onset of monsoon.
Sukraraj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital has confirmed 14 cases, while one case is reported in Kanti Children’s Hospital.
Contaminated water is the main cause of cholera and diarrhoea in Kathmandu, doctors said.
The cholera patients, between three and 88 years of age, were from Teku, Tahachal, Kalimati, Swayambhu, Baneshwor, Rabibhawan, Dallu, Bhimsengola, Kalanki and Pinglasthan in Kathmandu, the hospitals involved in the patients’ treatment reported.
According to Dr Indra Prasad Prajapati, the hospital director, cholera cases have gone up this year compared to corresponding periods in the preceding years.
“Only eight cases were reported last year during this time,” the director said and feared of focal outbreak if the number kept on rising.
However, the epidemic could be limited to small focal area with people drinking the same contaminated water, Dr Prajapati said.
He further said that three of the total cholera cases were based in Swayambhu.
Dr Prajapati said leakage of drainage pipes and water pipelines is mainly responsible for the contamination of water.
The contaminated water causes waterborne diseases like cholera, diarrhoea, dysentery, typhoid, cholera, worm infection and jaundice.
The doctor suggested to boil, double filter and to treat water with chlorine before drinking it.
He also urged the government to disseminate awareness messages and repair the drainage and water supply system at the soonest.
A total of 2,167 patients were diagnosed with gastrointestinal infections, including diarrhoea and dysentery in 2010/11 and 1,712 in 2011/12, according to hospitals.
A miking campaign to make people aware of waterborne diseases is under way at high risk places, director of Kathmandu District Public Health Office (DPHO), Mahendra Prasad Shrestha, informed.
“We are also holding a multi-sectoral meeting with Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited (KUKL), Department of Water Supply and Sewerage, the Local Development Minister and others,” DPHO director Shrestha said.
He further said that they have further asked the KUKL to increase the amount of chlorine in drinking water for water purification.