Docs apprehend epidemic outbreak

Kathmandu, July 3:

Mounds of garbage dotting the capital, coupled with scarcity of potable water, can spark

an outbreak of water-borne and other diseases, warn doctors.

The garbage that has been piling up in the Kathmandu valley for about a month is unlikely to be removed completely for another week.

Dr Mahendra Bahadur Bista, director of Sukra Raj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital, says number of infectious diseases like gastroenteritis, cholera, typhoid, hepatitis, viral influenza and conjunctivitis go up in the rainy season.

"Eighty per cent diseases are water-borne and can be controlled by drinking safe water," he said. He blamed the Kathmandu Metropolitan City for not managing the waste properly and warned of an outbreak of epidemic if the situation persisted.

Bista said personal hygiene was a must in order to stay away from these diseases.

Dr Garib Das Thakur, chief of Epidemiology and Disease Control Division, stated that June and July were the months when diseases spread the most and special measures should be taken to prevent any outbreak of epidemic. Diseases caused by food, water and insects spread in this season, he said. He added that people should take utmost care of their food habits.

Dr Devi Prasad Bhusal, chief physician at Sukra Raj Tropical Hospital, said the hospital had already been witnessing a surge in the number of patients with the onset of rainy season as compared to other seasons.