Between January-February, Gujarat saw 55 swine flu deaths

Team from Centre in state to inspect spike in cases

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Following the spike in swine flu cases across the state, a Central government team of experts rushed to Gujarat on Tuesday for survey and inspection. Between January and February, around 1,463 cases of swine flu have been reported, resulting in 55 deaths. Incidentally, the maximum cases have been reported in Ahmedabad, with 32 per cent of the cases originating here.

To that end, Gujarat health commissioner, Jayanti Ravi addressed a press conference on Tuesday and said that a mortality rate of 3.57 per cent was recorded in the state, which was comparatively low when compared to Rajasthan. She added that the Centre's team was satisfied with the actions taken by the state government administration.

The three-member team from the Centre — that visited Ahmedabad, Vadodara, and Bhavnagar — included epidemiologist Dr Ankur Garg, microbiologist Dr Hemlata from National Center for Disease Control and Safdarjung Hospital's pulmonologist Dr Amit Kumar.

Ravi added, "The cases have increased in the last several days due to cold weather, but there is no need to panic. However, people need to be cautious about the symptoms of flu and should visit a doctor immediately. The cases will reduce as the temperature increases."

"The state government and health department are fully-equipped against seasonal flu. We have 9.52 lakh Temi-flu tablets in stock and there are 490 isolation ward ready for the patients. If needed, it can be taken up to 1,500 wards. At present, there are 16 testing laboratories and seven of those are in government hospitals. Three more will be added soon," she claimed, adding 300 medical staffers had been recruited in light of the seasonal flu spike.

The commissioner also said that health staff and administrative officers at district-level had undergone sensitisation and they prepared to take necessary actions when flu patients were admitted.

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