A report based on disease incidents registered in 91 district health offices across Pakistan in November 2012
ISLAMABAD, February 21, 2013: A significant increase of 80% was recorded in cases of measles in November – 247 cases reported in 17 districts as compared to 137 in 16 districts in the preceding month. Measles is considered highly contagious and chances of infection increase in late winter and spring. The sudden rise demands urgent government attention as vigorous door to door awareness and vaccination campaigns can help in prevention and control at this stage. FAFEN monitors visited 91 district health offices to collect disease data for November and reported Karachi (149 cases) as the district with most cases of measles, distantly followed by Loralai (17) and Dera Bugti (16). Among 2,610 cases of viral diseases, 89% were cases of hepatitis. One case of polio was registered in Mohmand Agency (FATA) in November 2012. Cases of suspected AIDS also increased- 32 cases reported in Punjab compared to 12 in the previous month. An increase of 12% was observed in the overall disease statistics in November as compared to October 2012.
Acute Respiratory Tract Infections (RTIs) were the most widely reported disease with 46% of the total disease cases (3,241,860) recorded. Twenty-two cases of meningitis were registered in three districts, a rise from 12 cases from two districts in October. Some diseases decreased in number during November. Cases of gastrointestinal infections which include diarrhea and dysentery and gastroenteritis went down by 12% and 7% respectively. Cases of tuberculosis also decreased 16%- 1,888 cases in November while 2,272 cases were reported in October. Similarly, among mosquito borne diseases, not only did cases of malaria drop (29%), no case of dengue was reported.
Punjab surfaced as the most disease concentrated region as eight among the top 10 districts reporting diseases in highest numbers were in Punjab and the remaining two in Sindh. For mother, infant and child mortality cases, November reported a total of 2,552 cases compared to 2,607 in the preceding month. An increase of 27% was observed for maternal mortality. Increase in cases of infant mortality was noted from 2,085 cases in October to 2,098 in the monitored month. A significant drop of 28% for child mortality was recorded.
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