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Delhi's dengue death toll touches 21

india Updated: Oct 07, 2006 21:41 IST
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The dengue virus continued to spread in the capital with 77 fresh cases being reported since Friday as three more people succumbed to the disease on Saturday taking the tally to 21.

"So far, the capital city has reported 825 cases of which 77 cases are new. Of the total number of fresh cases 44 are from AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Sciences)," Delhi Health Secretary DS Negi said.

According to AIIMS medical superintendent DK Sharma, the hospital had discharged 13 patients.

Usman Ghani, a 42-year-old patient from Gandhi Nagar in east Delhi, died at the AIIMS around 2.30 a.m. Saturday. Najma, 42, from Dadri and Angoori, 45, from Haryana died in the afternoon.

Both Ghani and Najma were admitted to the hospital Oct 5.

"Currently 144 patients are being treated at the AIIMS, of which 32 are from the campus itself. Five fresh case have come in from the campus since Friday," Sharma said.

"Of the 144 cases, 10 patients are in the intensive care unit," AIIMS chief spokesman Shakti Gupta said adding that over 900 patients were screened during the last 24 hours.

However, health authorities maintain there was no dengue fear at the AIIMS.

"I am yet to learn why there was so much hype about the AIIMS. Maybe it is because many people visit the hospital for preliminary tests," said Negi.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's two grandsons - Rohan (11) and Madhav (17) - and his son-in-law Vijay Tankha, a professor at St. Stephens College here, are being treated at the AIIMS for suspected dengue symptoms.

"All of them are recovering fast and are likely to be discharged Monday," said an AIIMS doctor.

Rohan was admitted on Tuesday, followed by Madhav and Tankha the next day.

Dengue, caused by the bite of the female Aedes Aegypti mosquito breeding in stagnant water, is marked by high fever, skin rashes and a sharp drop in platelet counts that can prove fatal.

Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had earlier appealed to the people to donate blood to meet any shortage due to the large number of patients.

"The situation is under control and there is enough blood and platelets to meet the demands," Dikshit said adding that she had instructed senior officials of the health department to organise blood donation camps.

So far 3,331 dengue cases have been reported from 14 states.

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