Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Swine Flu Ahmedabad Jamnagar City News Gujarat India

Swine flu claimed nine lives in two days in Gujarat as two more people succumbed to H1N1 virus in hospitals across the state on Tuesday with the total death toll climbing to 73.

On Monday, seven people had succumbed to swine flu. On Tuesday, the H1N1 virus claimed two more lives as Kaushal Gupta, 69, died in Sterling Hospital in Ahmedabad City while Ramlal Mavadia, 76, succumbed in GG Civil Hospital in Jamnagar City. At least three more people died on Tuesday due to suspected swine flu but their test results are yet to be ascertained.

The high number of deaths has sent alarm bells ringing as health officials urged private medical practitioners to follow renewed World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines and administer Tamiflu to suspected swine flu patients in the initial days of symptoms to avoid complications.

In Gujarat, it has been noticed that most patients who died in public hospitals were being treated for viral infections and pneumonia and brought for swine flu treatment when severe complications had set in. “It is important that private doctors take up the challenge of simple management of flu patients. Many patients are first treated for simple fever even pneumonia delaying H1N1 treatment which can prove fatal for patients. If doctors suspect that patient may have swine flu, they should start Tamiflu, said health secretary Rajesh Kishore who said swine flu was expected to worsen in winter. While a surge in swine flu was expected in winter season, public congregations like Unjha fair, the IIM festival and the forthcoming Kankaria Carnival are feared to expose more people to the virus.

While the government had installed thermal scanners at Navratri and Ambaji festivity venues, it curiously will not be scanning lakhs of people who will throng Kankaria. “Six medical team with eight doctors will be put to monitor swine flu. The check-ups will be voluntary and not mandatory for visitors,” said AMC medical health officer Suhas Kulkarni.

Meanwhile, infectious diseases specialist Dr Atul Patel said most doctors in other districts are not even aware that Tamiflu is now available in their region on prescription. “More awareness needs to be created. Also government might think of importing vaccines which will help stem the onslaught of swine flu,” said Dr Patel.

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