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Maharashtra: 303 heat-related illnesses in state, IMD forecasts severe heatwave till May 8

According to the state government data from March 15 till May 5, two people died in Aurangabad, two in Hingoli and one each in Beed, Dhule and Parbhani due to heatstroke.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
May 7, 2019 2:47:45 am
Maharashtra weather, weather maharashtra, maharashtra weather, heatwave maharashtra, maharashtra heatwave, heatwave maharashtra, mumbai weather, heatwave india, india heatwave, weather news, indian express Official data also shows that at least 303 people have been admitted to government hospitals for heat-related problems.

With seven deaths in the state due to heatstroke since March, and a second spell of heatwave forecast for Marathwada and North Central Maharashtra, the state health department has strengthened network with health workers on ground to tackle heatstroke-related cases.

According to the state government data from March 15 till May 5, two people died in Aurangabad, two in Hingoli and one each in Beed, Dhule and Parbhani due to heatstroke.

On April 29, a 35-year-old man was found unconscious near the district women’s hospital in Akola. Sheshrao Jaware was declared dead in the civic hospital. The cause of his death has not been officially recorded as heatstroke, even though post-mortem report indicated this may be the case. State officials said a committee of doctors will go through medical reports before officially recording his death.

Official data also shows that at least 303 people have been admitted to government hospitals for heat-related problems. Akola topped with 138 patients, followed by Nagpur (112 patients), Latur (41), Aurangabad (6) and Nashik (6).

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On Sunday, maximum temperatures in Parbhani and Jalna touched 42 degrees Celsius. Last month, maximum temperature in Vidarbha touched 47 degrees. According to India Meteorological Department (IMD), maximum temperature in Mumbai reached 33.7 (Colaba) on Monday.

“IMD provides us weekly alerts. Based on their input, we alert local health facilities,” said Dr Pradeep Awate, state epidemiologist. While Cyclone Fani dropped temperatures briefly in the state, the mercury is set to rise again this week. “The intensity of summers is higher than last year. The severity of cases we receive has also risen,” Awate said.

Cyclone Fani made landfall on Odisha coast on May 3. IMD predicts return of extreme heatwave from May 6 till May 8, with Vidarbha set to reel under high temperatures. Affected regions will also include Marathwada, North Maharashtra and Central Maharashtra. IMD officials said north westerly winds will also cause rise in temperature.

State-appointed Maharashtra Emergency Medical Services (MEMS), that has 937 ambulances for medical emergency, has so far reached out to 40 heatstroke related cases since March 1 across the state. Nanded recorded seven, Chandrapur five and Osmanabad four cases where patients suffered heatstroke and ambulances were rushed to them for first aid.

“Heatstroke cases require a quicker response time. Even golden hour rule becomes late for them, as dehydration affects entire body. The body heats up, and requires hospitalisation,” said Dr Jyotsna Mane, from BVG-run MEMS. The ambulances have been equipped with saline bottles so that patients admitted are stabilised before a hospital can be reached.

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