Rajasthan News

Swine Flu cases rises in Rajasthan as 111 dead so far

by RajasthanDirect
Feb 18, 2013

Sudden spurt in swine flu (H1N1) in Rajasthan claiming 111 lives during the past 49 days of 2013, including 32 during the past fortnight, has assumed scary proportion making the desert state worst hit.

150 people lost their lives due to swine flu since April last year.

So far at least 828 positive cases of the virus have been identified in the state since April, 2012. They include 500 cases identified during the past 48 days alone.

This seems to be too much for the state government to handle as the department of medical and health seems to be at its wit’s end and could hardly act beyond rituals of holding review meetings.

While the state was hit by the virus on a massive scale as back as in 2009 when 198 people had died, it took so long for state’s principal secretary, health, Deepak Upreti to impress upon his health officials the importance of screening all the students of the school once a student of that educational institution reported positive. He called a review meeting of the department on Sunday when he directed his staff that once a positive case was noticed in a locality the entire neighbourhood in a radius of 50 metre must be screened for the virus.

Though such advisories make good inputs for official files and media reports but they have little to do with department’s working in the field. Despite a rise in virus affected people’s number the official machinery has failed in taking effective preventive measures. An earlier advisory of conducting surveys of areas from where positive cases were reported met same fate.

Government hospitals in districts were found treating positively tested or suspected patients with general patients in the same wards instead of creating isolation wards. Even in the state’s premier hospital, Sawai Man Singh hospital of Jaipur, such a situation continued for quite long. In this background it was not surprising that two IAS officers, Vipin Chandra Sharma and Navin Mahajan, and even medical students recently tested positive in the state.

Though the number of suspected victims has remained on the rise, the health department continued to claim situation to be under control. Strangely, not all get free of cost vaccination.

State’s director, medical and public health, B R Meena though conceded that the large number of deaths was a matter of serious concern but attributed the increase to people not approaching hospitals immediately after developing symptoms.

src: India Today


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