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* Dengue deaths rising in Sri Lanka
Tue, Jul 14, 2009, 08:07 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

July 14, Colombo: Sri Lankan health authorities are losing the battle with dengue outbreak in the country as the death toll from the deadly epidemic has risen to 175 so far this year.

According to the National Dengue Prevention Unit, since January 16,714 dengue cases have been reported all over the country.

Sri Lanka's Health Ministry is baffled that most of the cases are reported from the upcountry. The central hill district of Kandy is the worst affected, with about 2,200 cases. Colombo, Gampaha, and Kalutara districts also have reported high rates of infection and deaths.

The Ministry has taken unusual measures to contain the spread of the disease so as to even arrest the public who inadvertently provide breeding grounds for the deadly mosquito, which is active during the daylight hours.

The government brought in two entomologists from Cuba to assist in developing a strategy to kill the mosquitoes. The government is planning to import the bacteria, Bacillus Thuringiensis Israelensis or BTI, which can kill the mosquito at the larvae stage.

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