With five more deaths from swine flue being reported on Saturday, taking the total toll to over 170, state Health Minister Shankar Chaudhary said that there could be a jump in the H1N1 cases in the next two weeks. “We are expecting the number of (swine flu) cases to increase in the coming two weeks. We have set up the 104 fever helpline, which is working round the clock.
The helpline is to ensure that health workers reach people who report fever. We have 5,000 doctors working on swine flu and have set up 680 isolation wards in hospitals across the state,” the minister told mediapersons after attending a meeting with Chief Minister Vijay Rupani. “We had a meeting with the CM and District Collectors, and are working on spreading awareness among people. We request people to take precaution as prevention is better than cure. Do not send children to school if they are unwell, do not sneeze in your hands but use a cloth. I would also say that one should opt for namaste instead of shaking hands while greeting people,” Chaudhary added.
Health officials said that around 40,000 health workers, 5,000 MBBS students, 3,000 AYUSH workers and 5,000 doctors have been spreading awareness and ensuring that people avail treatment and medicine on time. “In 2015, there was a swine flu epidemic, and this year we are doing much better. The cases and deaths are lesser. Due to the peaking pattern of the virus we are expecting the number of cases to increase in the coming two weeks.
This year the number of swine flu cases and deaths has reduced . No mutation of the virus has taken place. The most important thing is to make sure that any signs of fever accompanied with a running nose and pain in the throat is immediately checked for swine flu . We have also told doctors to administer Tami Flu even before the results of the tests are out ,” said Health Commissioner Jayanti Ravi. The government has also decided not to cancel any festivals or melas in the state.
“We are just saying that people who are unwell should not go out as they will infect others. We are holding medical camps at various melas and festivals,” said the minister.From January 11 to August 11, the state has reported 1,344 cases of swine flu. Out of which there have been over 170 deaths. Maximum number of deaths has been registered in Ahmedabad — 390 positive cases and 39 deaths, according to the health department. On Saturday, Ahmedabad reported three deaths.Two more deaths were reported from Surat. Among the two latest fatalities are a 63-year-old woman and a 74-year-old man. Both had tested positive of swine flu a few days ago.