Even as fear loomed large, the government on Thursday said no outbreak of disease has been reported from the flood-affected areas.
“So far, no water, food, air-borne or direct contact diseases have been reported from the affected areas,” health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said at a press conference in New Delhi.
The central government, Azad said, has decided to release additional funds to rebuild hospitals and medical colleges that were destroyed in the state due to floods. “We have assured the state government that the amount will be above the funds allocated under National Rural Health Mission,” said Azad. He, however, did not specify the amount.
The Union health ministry, Azad said, has rushed its top doctors and officials to tackle any eventuality. “Our high-level team comprising experts from the National Centre for Disease Control, Emergency Medical Response and National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme, among others, is at Uttarakhand. “Their job is to detect and control disease outbreak. There have been a few cases but nothing worrisome so far,” he added.
Asked if he would visit the state anytime, Azad said, “ministers become a burden on them. We are more of a problem than the solution. They don’t need people from the administration, they need healthcare workers.”
The teams of doctors are stationed at Gauchar, Joshimath and Rudraprayag. Ten trucks containing life-saving medicines and family packs with utensils, tents, mosquito nets, etc, have been sent to the state that will help a family sustain for at least 15 days.
On the request of the Uttarakhand government, a pool of 40 medical officers has been constituted and kept on standby for emergency.