iconimg Wednesday, September 02, 2015

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Lucknow, June 28, 2013
A pharmacist’s weird way of administering anti-rabies injection, which has now come to light, may rattle many who had gone to Rani Laxmibai Hospital to get a shot in the past few weeks. The pharmacist allegedly mixed several vials of the vaccine powder and solvent in advance in the morning itself and collected them in one bottle. According to the norms, each vial of the powder medicine has to be separately mixed with the solvent only at the time of administering the medicine. The faulty method of injecting the medicine can put a patient’s life at risk.

The matter came to fore when a patient, who was aware of the correct way of injecting medicine, complained to the hospital authorities. The latter formed a two-member committee, which found the complaint was correct. Experts say keeping pre-mixed doses can cause damage in two ways. First, it can significantly reduce the efficacy and secondly there can be reactions due to exposure of medicine to air and plastic, which the syringe is made of.

“Since there are chances that the medicine efficacy might reduce or it might react, the manufacturing company provides doses in power form, which has to be administered within minutes of mixing it with solvent,” said a doctor.

“The report has been forwarded to the senior officials,” said hospital’s chief medical superintendent Dr VK Shukla.

Rabies is a viral disease that causes acute encephalitis. The disease is zoonotic, meaning it can be transmitted from one species to another, such as from dogs to humans, commonly by a bite from an infected animal.

For a human being, rabies is almost invariably fatal if postbite preventive treatment is not administered before the onset of severe symptoms. The rabies virus infects the central nervous system, ultimately causing disease in the brain and death.