Over 2,000 cases, 8 deaths from Mucormycosis in Maharashtra so far, govt creating special wards: Health minister Tope
After announcing free treatment for patients suffering from the rare fungal infection of Mucormycosis, Maharashtra health minister Rajesh Tope on Tuesday said more than 2,000 cases have been reported and eight people have succumbed to the infection in the state so far. He said that the state government is creating special wards for these patients, reported news agency ANI.
"Mucormycosis patients will be treated for free under Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana. Over 2,000 cases have been reported and 8 people have died of this infection in the state so far. We are making special wards for these patients," ANI quoted Tope as saying.
Tope on Monday announced the free treatment of patients of Mucormycosis under the Maharashtra government's flagship medical insurance scheme -- Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana.
Patients will get free treatment under the health scheme at 1,000 hospitals across the state. The minister announced about the free treatment citing that the cost of medicines for the treatment is expensive, hence the aid will be provided to the patients.
Mucormycosis or 'black fungus' is a growing concern in Covid-19 patients in India. The disease that is strongly linked to diabetes can lead to blackening or discoloration over the nose, blurred or double vision, chest pain, breathing difficulties and coughing blood. The infection is found to be in Covid-19 patients with diabetes and compromised immune systems. Covid-19 and its treatment can have a severe impact on patients with diabetes as it can be exacerbated by steroids like dexamethasone during the treatment of the viral disease.
Tope also said that the symptoms of fungal infection are being reported in Covid-19 patients who are diabetic and whose diabetes is not under control. The state health minister also said that an awareness campaign to educate people about the infection will also be organised.
Meanwhile, Odisha also reported its first case of Mucormycosis on Monday in a 71-year old man with a history of uncontrolled diabetes
Uncontrolled diabetes, mellitus cancers, organ transplant, long-term corticosteroid and immunosuppressive therapy and HIV/AIDS increase the risk of fungal infection, the Union health ministry said in a statement.
The statement added that a drop in immunity due to the steroids used in the treatment can be a triggering factor in some cases of the disease, but it is still uncommon.
(With inputs from agencies)