Get immediately tested on finding swine flu symptoms, appeals Saraf

Rajasthan health minister Kali Charan Saraf appealed to people on Thursday to get tested for swine flu at the slightest hint of symptoms as the state is grappling with an outbreak of the H1N1 virus, with 996 cases and 88 deaths reported since this January

jaipur Updated: Feb 22, 2018 22:08 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Rajasthan news,H1N1 virus,Kali Charan Saraf
Test facilities for the H1N1 virus are available in seven government medical colleges, including the Desert Medical Research Centre in Jodhpur, and four private laboratories in Rajasthan.(Representative Picture/HT File Photo. )

Rajasthan health minister Kali Charan Saraf appealed to people on Thursday to get tested for swine flu at the slightest hint of symptoms as the state is grappling with an outbreak of the H1N1 virus, with 996 cases and 88 deaths reported since this January.

The minister also convened a meeting of a committee formed to control seasonal diseases and reviewed the situation.

He said rapid action teams are being sent to affected areas and people are screened for swine flu symptoms and medicines given.

Saraf said whenever a positive test is found, the person is quickly informed and the entire family is screened as people carrying the virus can spread it one day before they have any symptoms and as many as a week after they get sick.

“On finding swine flu symptoms, instead of panicking, people should immediately get tested and take treatment,” he added.

Test equipment and logistics — such as collecting samples at district hospitals — as well as medicines for swine flu are available in sufficient quantity in the state, the minister assured. Besides, auxiliary nursing midwives and accredited social health activists (ASHA) have been directed to go to every household to screen people and create awareness about swine flu.

The samples are being sent to medical colleges, where these are tested and reports prepared within seven hours so that treatment can begin as soon as someone tests positive, Saraf said.

Test facilities are available in seven government medical colleges, the Desert Medical Research Centre in Jodhpur, and four private laboratories in the state.

The health minister said 3,033 hospitals have functional screening centres along with 1,580 isolation beds, 214 ICU beds and 198 ventilators.

Apart from swine flu, cases of dengue are also increasing in the state. A total of 519 dengue cases were reported across the state from January 1 this year to February 22.

Minister Saraf directed officials to take necessary steps to control mosquito breeding to prevent the spread of this vector-borne disease.

The additional chief secretary in the health department, Veenu Gupta, said swine flu is showing a declining trend since 195 positive cases in the first week of January. In the subsequent weeks, the reported cases were 160, 136, 145, 122, 113 and 108 in the seventh week.

She said screening is being done at schools, colleges, hostels and night shelters in Jaipur. So far, 75,000 students were screened in 506 schools; 8,500 in 15 colleges; more than 28,000 in 232 hostels; and 2,250 people in night shelters. Symptoms were found in 169 people and treatment was provided to them.

Medical education secretary Anand Kumar, National Health Mission director Naveen Jain, public health director DR VK Mathur were among those present at the meeting convened by the health minister.

First Published: Feb 22, 2018 22:08 IST