Mosquito-borne dengue fever spurs fear in Bangladesh
Hospitals struggle to deal with rising number of infected patients in South Asian nation
The spread of dengue virus in Bangladesh has hit new highs, according to officials, with cases of the mosquito-borne disease reported in all but two of the country's 64 districts.
There are conflicting reports of the death toll from the outbreak this year with local media putting the number at 53 on Wednesday morning, while government data reporting eight deaths.
A record 1,477 patients were diagnosed with the viral disease in the last 24 hours, according to the country's health service.
These latest figures have taken the number of dengue-affected people in the country since January to over 17,000, a record high.
In 2018, a total of 7,450 dengue cases were reported in the South Asian country.
The government is dealing with this epidemic on an emergency basis canceling the leaves of doctors and staff at all public hospital ahead of the Muslim holiday of Eid ul-Adha.
Dengue symptoms include high fever and joint pain, but more serious cases may result in hemorrhagic fever which may develop into massive bleeding.
After a weeks-long battle with the virus, Saugato Bosu, a resident of capital Dhaka, is back at the hospital to seek treatment for his 10-year-old sister who has also contracted the virus.
The family has already paid out $1000 for treatment, as the country has no state health insurance policy in place.
Doctors and health experts have advised people to use mosquito repellants and nets for sleeping.
The mosquito breeds in freshwater so it is best to keep the house and surrounding areas free of stagnant water, they added.