Swine flu cases increase to 23 in Guwahati, City Hospitals on High Alert
Guwahati registered eight more cases of swine flu within the past one week, taking the total number of patients to 23 till now.
Prior to this, G Plus had reported that till last week, at least 15 positive cases of swine flu were detected in Guwahati which increased to 23 this week.
“We have recorded 23 positive cases of the disease in Guwahati with one death case. This was revealed in the regular testing which is being conducted at the Gauhati Medical College & Hospital for swine flu,” informed Kabita Devi, an official at the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) in Guwahati.
She added that the only case in which the patient has died till now is the first case which was recorded this year. The person had travelled to Shillong and we are suspecting the patient carried the virus from there, informed officials.
Devi further mentioned that apart from the 23 cases which have been registered, four additional cases from people from other districts have been registered who have undergone treatment in Guwahati.
The state has been witnessing an increasing number of cases of swine flu for the past few months. Apart from Guwahati, the cases of swine flu are continually increasing across the state too. In addition to Guwahati, patients affected by the H1N1 virus have also been reported from Nalbari, Karbi Anglong, Baksa and other districts of the state.
Swine flu is an air-borne infection which is caused by a virus called H1N1. It can spread from person to person and is caused when people come in direct or indirect contact with tiny drops of the virus which are spread in the air through coughing or sneezing by a person infected with the virus. It is also spread through touching a contaminated surface or by coming in close contact with an infected person.
The disease originated in pigs and is hence called “swine flu” since pigs can also get this virus.
Currently, the swine flu tests from across Assam are being conducted at two places in the state including the Gauhati Medical College & Hospital (GMCH) and Regional Medical Research Centre (RMRC) in Dibrugarh.
Experts have said that they have noticed a worrying trend that now the virus has entered Guwahati and is now being spread among people who have not travelled to other cities in the recent past.
All hospitals on High Alert
Keeping in view the emergence and spread of the disease, the state health and family welfare department has issued guidelines to all hospitals to maintain precaution.
Joint director of health services of Kamrup (Metro), Ganesh Saikia, mentioned, “We are already taking a number of preventive measures for the disease including creating awareness for swine flu. We are hoping that the number of positive cases for H1N1 will come down in the future.”
Some of the precautions which are advised for prevention of transmission of the virus include covering mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, avoiding touching nose, eyes or mouth. Further, doctors say that one must not come in close contact with people who display flu-like symptoms.
Additionally, officials said that all hospitals have been asked to keep an eye on patients displaying symptoms of the disease. They have also advised not to admit all cases of swine flu. Further, persons suffering from minor flu-like conditions like a little bit of headache with mild fever and without body ache need not undergo testing for swine flu,” said an official.
He added that people showing symptoms like respiratory distress, difficulty in breathing, chest pain, belong to the “C category” and should be tested for H1N1 virus.
The virus has also taken its toll across the county with at least 377 swine flu deaths being reported from across India. Further, the number of persons infected with the disease is over 12,000.
Rajasthan recorded the highest number of cases in the country with 3,508 cases and 127 deaths followed by Gujarat which registered 1,983 positive cases and 71 deaths.
Keeping in mind the data coming in from the rest of country, the health ministry has ordered all state governments to take measures for early detection of the disease.