Even as the authorities concerned had issued an advisory on October 28 to gear up to deal with possible swine flu cases in Jalandhar and surrounding areas, district health department has not taken a single step in this direction so far.
In a letter addressed to all civil surgeons, medical superintendents of civil hospitals, the state programme officer of integrated disease surveillance programme (IDSP) has asked them to pull up their socks to fight with the deadly H1N1 in view of high rate of mortality and morbidity from the flu last year here. The same can be reduced with an early reporting of cases to the designated health institutions, it added.
The officer claimed that the state has already witnessed two confirmed cases and one death due to H1N1 this year.
The advisory reads that a control room should be set up in the district besides forming a rapid response team. The names and contact numbers of members of the team should be prominently displayed outside the civil hospital and other public places, it further says.
The teams should always be ready with all requisite equipment such as triple-layered masks etc so that any suspected case is reported the team could initiate the patient’s treatment.
Isolation wards and critical care wards should also be earmarked for the admission and treatment of patients, it says.
Moreover, awareness activities and training workshop for medical officers, IMA members and medical students should be started immediately.
However, the arrangements are still to be made by the department or the civil hospital to deal with swine flu cases. The swine flu ward is not ready.
The names of members of rapid response team have not been displayed anywhere and training for medical staff is still to be held.
A senior doctor said that every year the disease spreads with a dip in temperature. He said that the swine flu season starts around October- November and goes on till February or March.
Dr TD Gupta, district integrated disease surveillance programme (IDSP) officer, said, “We have written to all senior medical officers of community and primary health centres. Isolation wards and control rooms would be set up soon in the coming days and a meeting with officials would be held.”
Coughing, sneezing, body ache, fever, chill, fatigue, diarrhoea, vomiting, restlessness, sore throat and runny nose
Wash hands frequently, especially after coughing or sneezing
Wash hands after handling anything which could have been contaminated
Hands should be washed using soap or alcohol based disinfectants
Keep distance from person(s) having flu
Sick persons should be separated from healthy ones
Take proper care of sick person