Crowds thin out in Pune | india | Hindustan Times
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Crowds thin out in Pune

On Thursday, there were 17 new cases confirmed in Pune. Yet the decision to start screening suspected swine flu patients at 15 more centres in Pune did wonders for Naidu hospital.

india Updated: Aug 07, 2009 01:28 IST

On Thursday, there were 17 new cases confirmed in Pune.

Yet the decision to start screening suspected swine flu patients at 15 more centres in Pune did wonders for Naidu hospital.

The crowd that turned up at the hospital to be screened on Thursday was much less compared to the earlier day when over 1,000 people turned up.

Hospital authorities also made arrangements for transportation to these centres.

“People are being asked to go to the nearest location to be screened. Only if they are suspected positive, would they be referred to Naidu Hospital or Aundh General Hospital where they would be quarantined and their throat swab samples collected,” said Dr R.R. Pardeshi, head, Pune Municipal Corpo-ration’s health department.

While civic authorities claimed that the screening process ran smoothly, some patients begged to differ.

“I went to one centre but found that it was would start screening tomorrow, so I had to come here,” said Pramod Talati, a patient at Naidu Hospital.

Hindustan Times visited a few of the 15 designated screening centres and found that some did deny patients saying they had no doctors or medicine.

“We have been intimated only at late afternoon. We have no doctors here, masks or medicine. We have been told to start screening from tomorrow. A few patients came but we turned them away, said a staffer at Kailas Gendva Shivade municipal dispensary in Chikalwadi, Aundh road.

But the scene at Mumbai’s Kasturba Hospital was of panic.

Even those who had no symptoms poured into the Chichpokli hospital through Thursday to get tested for Influenza A/H1N1 or swine flu.

Around 200 people were screened till evening and five suspected cases quarantined.

“After clinical examination, we collected throat swabs of 110 people for swine flu testing,” said deputy medical superintendent Dr Ravi Kadam.

He added that everyone was insisting on the test but they collected samples only if the patient had a history of travel or contact with patients.

There were no new positive cases in Mumbai on Thursday.

After Wednesday’s rush, Kasturba Hospital authorities set aside a ward for swine flu screening and put four doctors on the job. Still there was chaos.

“I had been waiting for an hour and it was my turn to be examined when the doctor decided to go for lunch. He returned after two hours,” said a Taj hotel employee, who has been suffering from fever.