In spite of all the preparations claimed by the health department,Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) is far from being controlled in the state. The number of cases has already crossed last years figures (in UP) and the death toll due to the disease has crossed the hundred mark.
On Monday,another patient succumbed to the disease in Kushinagar district,taking this years toll to 109.
As per data available with the health department,560 cases of AES have been reported across 11 districts of the state. The worst affected is Kushinagar with 190 cases so far and 25 deaths. Gorakhpur has also reported 126 cases and 34 deaths.
Last year,the number of AES cases as well as deaths were much lower in the state till first week of July. The corresponding figures of 2011 show that the state had registered 461 cases of AES till July 7,2011 whereas deaths due to AES were 77. The good point,however,is that none of the reported AES cases has turned out to be Japanese Encephalitis (JE) so far. The cases are definitely increasing this year,not only in UP but also in Bihar. This is a trend of the virus,which becomes more infectious every three or four years and the cases rise. We are trying to do all we can to contain the cases, said Dr Ramji Lal,Director General,Health.
He said that a team of 11 doctors has been constituted to review the preparations at all the CHCs,PHCs and district hospitals of seven districts in Gorakhpur and Basti divisions on Wednesday. The doctors would check if medicines and ambulances are present at the facility and the staff is trained or not, he said. The Director General said that the tender for purchasing ventilators for these districts will also be finalised by next week. The ventilators will be used for establishment of intensive care units in district hospitals of Gorakhpur,Kushinagar,Sant Kabir Nagar,Siddharthnagar,Deoria,Maharajganj,Gonda and Lakhimpur Kheri as well as two hospitals in Basti.
Among other arrangements,ambulances have been sent to all the CHCs in the Gorakhpur and Basti division and pediatricians have been pulled out of neighbouring districts and posted in all the seven districts of these two divisions for one month each on a roaster basis. The ambulance services have been made free for AES patients.