Karnataka: H1N1 claims 4 lives, but health dept unaware

Four people have died due to H1N1 flu in the past three months with two deaths being reported just two days ago in Bengaluru.

Amid a scare over the rapid spread of Influenza A (H1N1) infection (swine flu), two premier health organisations — Shanthabai Devarao Shivaram Tuberculosis Sanatorium and Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases (RGICD) — and the Health and Family Welfare Services have locked horns over the deaths.

According to RGICD, four people have died due to H1N1 flu in the past three months with two deaths being reported just two days ago in Bengaluru. However, the state’s health department is unaware of the deaths in Bengaluru.

The records say that three women and a man have so far died due to H1N1 flu wherein two of the deceased belonged to Bengaluru.

The first death happened on August 27, where a patient, Kavya Kamakshi, a 24-year-old pregnant woman was admitted at Manipal Hospital in the city complaining of lower respiratory tract infection. She was later referred to RGICD. She was a confirmed case of H1N1 flu and died at the hospital.

The second death happened on October 1, where a 60-year-old Puttamma, a resident of Ramanagaram was admitted with pneumonia and lower respiratory tract infection. She too, a confirmed case of H1N1 flu, could not recover and succumbed to the infection.

The third and the fourth deaths, both residents of Bengaluru, were reported on October 7 at the hospital. Govindan, a 55-year-old, complained of symptoms of flu and was coughing blood. He was a confirmed case of H1N1 flu. Gangarathnamma, a 37-year-old woman from Bengaluru complained of fever, vomiting and dysentery, a confirmed case of swine flu, and died due to severe dehydration.

However, the health department officials seem to be unaware of these deaths. Dr S Sajjan Shetty, joint director, National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBCP), said that they have not received any report from RGICD or from the National Institute of Virology (NIV) branch in Bengaluru till date.

“Two weeks ago, we received a letter from NIV seeking test kits as they had exhausted them. If that is the case, then how are they conducting tests?” he said.

However, it was learnt that swab samples were sent to the neurovirology department in Nimhans for tests on emergency cases coming to RGICD.

A(H1N1) cases at Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases (RGICD)

Since September, 84 have visited the hospital for screening
11 people have tested positive for H1N1 flu
4 have died at the hospital
3 confirmed cases being treated now
400 test positive

As many as 400 people have tested positive for Influenza A (H1N1), also known as swine flu, in the state with the maximum number of cases reported from Bengaluru city at 98, followed by Shivamogga (43), and Dakshina Kannada (24). Of the 4,702 samples tested since January 2018, 400 cases have tested positive for the respiratory infection.

Tamiflu is the antiviral drug administered to those having fever and cold symptoms.

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Karnataka: H1N1 claims 4 lives, but health dept unaware

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