In the last four months, at least 62 people succumbed to different types of fever in Kerala out of which 24 died due to H1N1 influenza, State Health minister K K Shylaja informed the state Assembly on Thursday. Cases of dengue, chicken pox were reported from all around the state but the health department was well-equipped to handle it, she added.
Replying to opposition’s adjournment motion, the minister attributed climate change and scarcity of pure drinking water reasons for the outbreak. “Government hospitals are well-equipped to tackle the outbreak of any type of fever. Adequate amount of medicines are stocked in all state-run pharmacies,” Shylaja said.
“This year, there is an increase in the outbreak of H1N1 in the southern states…and in Kerala also it has started spreading,” she said.
The government has appointed adequate number of doctors to tackle the situation and also sanctioned Rs 73 lakh to implement various preventive measures in this regard, said the minister.
However, former Health minister V S Sivakumar (Congress) has blamed the government for not taking precautionary measures. “Over seven lakh people sought treatment for fever in various government hospitals in the last four months. Seven out of eight people died this month due to H1N1,” he said.
Criticising the government, Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said lack of coordination and the absence of a scientific waste management system is responsible for the loss of 62 lives.
The opposition also walked out of the Parliament as Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan disallowed their demand to speak over the issue.