First swine flu death in state

SHIMLA: Health officials are on their toes following a swine flu death and admission of six patients to Indira Gandhi Medical College and Hospital (IGMC) in one week.

Kuldeep Chauhan

Tribune News Service

Shimla, January 11

Health officials are on their toes following a swine flu death and admission of six patients to Indira Gandhi Medical College and Hospital (IGMC) in one week.

The patient, who died of swine flu at the IGMC last week, has been identified as Madan (45) from Maloh in Sundernagar.

“Six others — three from Shimla, one each from Kullu, Mandi and Solan — have tested positive for H1N1 virus and have been shifted to the isolation ward,” said Dr Ramesh Chand, Senior Medical Superintendent, IGMC.

Three swine flu deaths have been reported since November 2015. The patients were from Mashobra, Sundernagar and Solan, said Dr Rakesh M Bhardwaj, state programme officer.

“The virus shows signs of resurgence during the winter. The victims had other medical complications too,” he added.

He said those in contact with the affected persons had been given treatment to quell the spread of the virus. “Tamiflu medicines have been stocked up in each district hospital and isolation wards have been readied to accommodate the patients,” he added.

In 2015, out of 123 cases of swine flu (the highest reported so far in the state), 27 patients had died. “Since 2012, about 36 of 170 patients have died,” said the health officials.

Dr Bhardwaj said: “The testing facility at the IGMC was set up in 2015. Since then, we have been keeping a track of the cases,” he added.

“The surveillance has been upped in the areas reporting the spread of infection. There is no need to panic as the health officials have administered medicines to the persons coming in contact with the patients,” said Dr Bhardwaj.

The health officials said they had issued an advisory. “The swine flu can result in pneumonia, lung infection and other breathing problems. It can be fatal for patients suffering from diabetes or asthma,” they said.

They said those having cough, fever, sore throat, bodyache, headache, chills and fatigue should consult the doctor.

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