Winter is conducive for H1N1 virus: Expert



According to Dr Vasudeva Murthy, Deputy Director, State Surveillance Unit, 20 per cent of patients who were categorised as “Category A” are the most susceptible to develop infection.
 
The “Category A” classification was made to patients with mild fever/sore throat/cold where they were not administered with the Tamiflu drug but were under observation for 48 hours.

Dr Murthy added that these patients had suppressed symptoms and if they have been through incomplete medication then they are prone to infection, as per the survey.

Adding to various predictions on the second wave, Dr Raviraj, Resident Medical Officer, Lakeside Medical Centre and Hospital, said that suppressed respiratory tract infection might just develop into severe conditions.

“As of now, we do not have many patients walking in for screening, but we need to be cautious as the weather will play a major role in facilitating the H1N1 virus to survive in the community,” he said.

Weather predictions

Cold season does bring in its own set of health problems and coming days will record low temperatures.
According to an official from the Meteorological Department, temperature is expected to reach the lowest by December end and beginning of January as per the trends.  "At present the temperature is at 16.2 degrees and in the next 15 days the temperature is expected to go as low as 12 degrees," said the official.

Precautions for hospitals

* Keep more beds in the isolation ward in hospitals.
* Equip hospitals with additional ventilators.
* Keep enough stock on personal protective equipment
*  Train medical staff in the ICU about handling ventilators.

Present status

* 38 retail outlets are selling Oseltamivir on Schedule ‘X’ prescription
* Nimhans, Narayana Nethralaya will test throat swabs. However, testing is not free in Narayana Nethralaya.
* 6,364 suspected cases have been screened and samples sent for testing.
* 1,400 persons have tested positive in the State till date
* 118 person have succumbed to H1N1 Influenza with 70 alone in Bangalore.

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