As the disease threat loomed large over the flood-hit Valley, it was time for chief minister Omar Abdullah to give some health tips to people.A woman gynaecologist attending to pregnant women at the outdoor unit of the Government Maternity Hospital in Srinagar.
Two days after writing an article for a daily about the ‘inability’ of his government to meet expectations during the floods, Abdullah reached the makeshift studio of Radio Kashmir Srinagar to tell people about the dos and don’ts to keep diseases at bay.
The chief minister assured people that the administration is working overtime to pump the water out of the affected areas.
He said the health department would distribute free chlorine tablets in the affected areas.
Abdullah advised the state government employees to join work at the earliest and threatened suspension in case of noncompliance.
Meanwhile, a group of paramedics from the public health centre, Zadibal, in old Srinagar, are taking rounds of the relief camps in their vicinity to vaccinate children against the measles outbreak. “We got 15 cases of measles in our health centre, so we have started this drive,'' said Dilnaz Abid, a health educator from the centre. The PHC has vaccinated about 400 children in two days. “Children living in clusters are facing a high risk,'' she said.
Initially, the health centre had started with distribution of chlorine tablets and now that the water is receding, it has moved to health education.
DOs AND DON’Ts
The ambulance keeps announcing the do's and don'ts for people in the affected area. If we take care of sanitation and hygiene, the epidemic can be kept at bay,'' he added. The Jammu and Kashmir government has started a health education and vaccination drive, besides trying to get the routine healthcare services functional.
According to an official statement, the routine healthcare services in the Bone and Joint Hospital, Srinagar and Maternity Hospital Sanat Nagar have been resumed, while the SKIMS, Bemina (JVC) would also be made partially functional in a day or two. We are trying to pump out water from JVC and will simultaneously start functioning from makeshift tents in the parking area,'' said Dr Farooq Ahmad Jan, MS SKIMS.
State health and medical education minister Taj Mohi-u-Din, during the inspection of the hospitals in Srinagar, Pulwama, Anantnag and Baramulah districts, said that the Bone and Joints Hospital is already functional, while the healthcare services in SKIMS, Bemina would be partially resumed in a day or two.
“The services in SKIMS, Bemina will be started partially as the area is still waterlogged,” the minister was told during the inspection. He was also told that the Maternity Hospital in Sanat Nagar was also functional and catering to huge number of patients.
The minister asked the medical fraternity to work with full dedication and contribute their best at this time of crisis arisen due to the devastating calamity. He asked the doctors to take due care of the patients and advise people about the precautions to prevent infections and spread of water-borne diseases, the risk of which has increased with the decrease in the floodwater level.
He said 40 lakh chlorine tablets have been made available in Srinagar, which would greatly help in providing safe drinking water to the people and prevent the spread of water-borne diseases. During the inspection of district hospitals in Anantnag, Pulwama and Baramulla, the minister took stock of the medicine stocks and functioning of different sections. He was told that the medicine stocks were satisfactory at all hospitals and there was no immediate shortage.