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The Swine Flu Terror: 67 Deaths Reported In Ahmedabad

Swine flu first affected millions of people in April 2009 and it was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO).A team of three senior doctors from Delhi arrived in Ahmedabad on Tuesday to know about the swine flu outbreak in the state.

The Swine Flu Terror: 67 Deaths Reported In Ahmedabad

Swine Flu: Don't ignore fever or chest pain

HIGHLIGHTS

  1. Swine Flu is a respiratory infection caused by influenza A virus
  2. Ahmedabad city has reported total of 1,232 swine flu cases and 67 deaths
  3. people with a weak immune system are at a high risk of catching swine flu
Swine flu first affected millions of people in April 2009 and it was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO). Swine flu is a strain of flu that normally occurs among pigs but has begun spreading among humans. It is termed as swine flu because the virus that first caused the disease had originated from pigs. It is a respiratory infection caused by influenza A virus. The virus was originated in Mexico, and has infected thousands of people worldwide.

A team of three senior doctors from Delhi arrived in Ahmedabad on Tuesday to know about the swine flu outbreak in the state. Doctors in the team were Lalit Dar, head of microbiology at All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) , Dr Deepak Bhattacharya, senior CMO of respiratory medicine at Safdarjung Hospital and Dr Saket Kulkarni, deputy director, epidemiology at National Center for Disease Control (NCDC). They also planned to visit Rajkot and later submit a report to the state government on controlling the disease.

On Tuesday, the doctors met Health Minister Shankar Chaudhary and senior health officers before visiting the Civil Hospital in Asarwa.

Gaurav Dahiya from National Health Mission(NHM), who is coordinating the visit said "The main aim of the visit is to decide the further course of action to tackle swine flu in the coming days."

Dahiya, however, refuted allegations that there has been delay on the part of the government in tackling the disease. "There has been no delay in dealing with swine flu. It is not a knee-jerk reaction. We are doing our bit and making sure that medicines are available. The committee is here to give us suggestions on how to prevent further deaths."

The team will be looking at preparedness, labs and their facilities. They will carry out death analysis and look at availability of medicines in Ahmedabad and Rajkot which have reported the maximum cases and deaths in the state.

Since January, Ahmedabad city has reported a total of 1,232 swine flu cases and 67 deaths. On the other hand while Rajkot Municipal Corporation has reported a total of 365 cases and 87 deaths. On August 23, the team will visit the swine flu ward at the PDU Civil Hospital in Rajkot after meeting the RMC commissioner.

This year, the disease appears to have a strong comeback claiming more than 900 lives across the country in the past eight months, with nearly 20,000 people being infected. Maharashtra and Gujarat are the worst affected with 404 and 190 deaths, respectively.

In Delhi, officials say, about 1300 people have tested positive for swine flu and five have died. Clinicians suspect the H1N1 virus, which causes swine flu, may have mutated. The disease initially spread through pigs but now transmits from human to human.

Union health ministry officials said government has put Oseltamivir, marketed as Tamiflu, in schedule H1 to enable it to be sold by all the licensed chemists under prescription. The drug was earlier in schedule X, wherein only certain selected pharmacists were authorized to stock it.

Some common symptoms of swine flu are coughing, running nose and eyes, breathing difficulties, eye redness, sneezing, fatigue, headache, fever and depression. Also, people with a weak immune system  and those suffering from diabetes, asthma are at a high risk of catching swine flu.

Swine flu can be treated at home as well. Here are some home remedies:

1. Have some leaves of Tulsi every morning as it keeps the throat and lungs clear and helps in infections by way of strengthening your immunity.

2. Giloi is a magical herb and a commonly available plant in many areas. It will work wonders for your immunity.

3. People who are not allergic to milk, must take a glass of hot or lukewarm milk every night with a small measure of turmeric.

4. If you can eat garlic, two pods of garlic every morning can do wonders. Garlic too strengthens immunity.

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