Alarming spike in swine flu cases reported in city in August 

Namrata Devikar
Saturday, 1 September 2018

“During the monsoon and post-monsoon period, we see a spike in these cases as the virus is more active in the moist season. However, in other months, the number of patients is relatively less. After the swine flu epidemic a few years back, the government machinery is equipped with tablets and vaccines to prevent fatalities,” said Dr Patsute.

Pune: There has been an increase in swine flu cases in the city. So far, 27 patients tested positive in the city hinting that the condition is alarming. The sudden rise in the cases was seen in the month of August.

As per data by the Health Department of the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), 5,88,548 people have been screened for H1N1 from January 1, 2018 to August 31, 2018, of these 5,749 were given Tamiflu tablets as a precautionary measure. Around 875 swab samples were sent for testing, of which 57 were found positive. 

Around 10 swab samples were sent for testing while five were tested positive for the disease on Friday.

Speaking to Sakal Times, Dr Sudhir Patsute from Naidu Hospital said the influenza virus becomes active in conducive weather with moisture.

“During the monsoon and post-monsoon period, we see a spike in these cases as the virus is more active in the moist season. However, in other months, the number of patients is relatively less. After the swine flu epidemic a few years back, the government machinery is equipped with tablets and vaccines to prevent fatalities,” said Dr Patsute.

Giving details about the civic body’s preparedness, Dr Anjali Sabne, Assistant Medical Officer of Health at PMC said important directives to high-risk patients have been issued by the department. “Since we observed a spike in cases, we issued important directives to high-risk patients. Pregnant women, elderly people and children are at a greater risk to swine flu as their immunity is less. These patients should take extra care. We have also asked health officials to administer Tamiflu, if the symptoms of swine flu persist. This is important as then the patient has better care,” said Dr Sabne.

She added that the PMC-run hospitals have enough supply of Tamiflu. “The medicines are available in abundance,” said Dr Sabne.

Speaking about the medicine supply, a doctor from the Health Department, on condition of anonymity, said there should be better co-ordination among government-run agencies. “As these medicines have an expiry date, their stock has to be limited. However, if the co-ordination within the government machinery is strong, there will never be a shortage of emergency medicines,” the doctor said.

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