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Black Fever: A Serious Threat on Human Health in West Bengal, India

Author Affiliations

  • 1 Department of Geography, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, West Bengal, INDIA

Int. Res. J. Social Sci., Volume 3, Issue (12), Pages 28-34, December,14 (2014)


Black Fever or Kala-azar is one of the deadly diseases that have affected mankind from time immemorial. The carrier of the disease is the leishmania parasite which spreads from the bite of an adult female sand fly. The disease has been found to be endemic in selected states of India like Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal among the eastern states and Uttar Pradesh, the state in the northern region of India. About 33 districts of Bihar are affected with the disease accounting to fatalities every year. Almost same scenario prevails for other states as well. In case of West Bengal ten districts have been identified as endemic which includes Darjiling, Koch Bihar, Jalpaiguri, Maldah, Uttar Dinajpur, Dakshin Dinajpur etc. The disease spreads mainly during the monsoon and retreating monsoon thus reflecting strong association of the disease with the environment. In recent years with tremendous initiatives of the Government the case fatality rate of the disease has been reduced to some extent though in some districts the effort is limited in the urban areas exhibiting some amount of negligence in the rural areas.


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