Meningitis cases up 83% in June

A report based on monitoring of 96 health offices in as many districts in June 2012

Cases of meningitis almost doubled – 12 districts reporting 267 in June as compared with 132 in 11 districts recorded in the preceding month, a Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) report said Thursday.

FAFEN governance monitors visited 96 health offices in as many districts to collect statistics on diseases. The data shows that Upper Dir (69), Lahore (62) and Karachi East (53) were the highest reporting districts of meningitis in the reporting month.

On the other hand, the total disease burden went down 29% in June (24,515 per district) as compared with May (34,565).

As many as 2,353,432 cases of various diseases were reported in the monitored month. Out of these, 49% were cases of Respiratory Tract Infections (RTIs) with Punjab reporting about three-fourths of them.  

Gastrointestinal infections that constituted 27% of the total disease burden went down 17% – from 8,219 per district in May to 6,799 in June.  Moreover, cases of scabies saw a similar drop – falling from 3,421 per district last month to 2,842 in the reporting period.

There were 12,957 cases of animal bites – 93% being those of dog bites and 7% snake bites. 

Dog bite cases witnessed a 29% decline per district but snake bite figures remained the same as previous month (13 per district).

Among diseases transmitted through mosquitoes, FAFEN monitors observed dengue and malaria. Like the preceding month, no case of dengue surfaced. However, 154 cases of malaria per district were registered as compared with 252 recorded in May. 

In the viral diseases category, hepatitis (3,704) was most frequently reported although the number of such cases fell 32% – from last month’s 132 per district to 90 in June.

Similarly, measles also saw a 33% drop – from 30 cases per district last month to 21 in June. Suspected AIDS fell 39% (from 46 to 28). One polio case was reported in FATA.

The cases of ‘other diseases’ came down by 68%.

As for cases of maternal, child and infant mortality, 149 mothers died in 35 districts due to pregnancy and delivery-related complications. May had seen 120 such deaths in 29 districts. The comparative per district cases remained unchanged.

Child mortality went up 12% per district – 402 children dying before attaining the age of five years as compared with last month’s 260 deaths.

However, infant mortality dropped from 2,342 cases in 36 districts to 2,121 in the month under review.

Ten districts reporting the highest disease burden included Faisalabad (7%), Lahore (6%), Bahawalpur (5%), Sialkot (4%), Rahimyar Khan (3%), Gujranwala (3%), Rajanpur (3%), Kasur (3%), Gujrat (3%) and Shikarpur (3%).