With swine flu infections on the rise, the Centre has advised state governments to set up separate OPD sections and wards in hospitals to screen and treat patients suffering from the deadly viral disease.
"Now doctors have been advised to have separate wards and OPD sections for swine flu patients," Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad told Doordarshan in an interview.
He said state governments have been told to separate screening and treatment of swine flu patients from those suffering from other ailments.
Doctors and paramedical staff treating swine flu patients have also been advised not to attend to other patients in the hospital, Azad said.
The minister said state governments have been told to completely isolate such wards and OPD sections and even remove central air-conditioning facility from these rooms as the virus could spread through the AC ducts.
Azad pointed out that these steps were being taken as the girl from Pune, the first swine flu victim, was admitted to one hospital, then the second and then a third and in the process spread the virus to 85 people.
He said doctors and paramedics attending to swine flu patients should take adequate precaution in ensuring that they themselves do not contract the disease.
Azad said the Health Ministry would launch a website on swine flu so that people who want to know more about the disease can get all the necessary information.