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Updated: December 10, 2009 20:17 IST

Swine flu cases up, 30 ventilators procured: Minister

Special Correspondent
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A woman with her daughter sitting outside the N1H1 (swine flu) screening centre at the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, in New Delhi. Photo: V. Sudershan
The Hindu A woman with her daughter sitting outside the N1H1 (swine flu) screening centre at the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, in New Delhi. Photo: V. Sudershan

Health Minister Kiran Walia on Thursday informed the Delhi Assembly that 30 more ventilators have been ordered for various hospitals in view of the increase in the number of swine flu cases.

Responding to the matter raised by Leader of Opposition V. K. Malhotra, Prof. Walia said Delhi has been lauded by the World Economic Forum for its handling of the swine flu cases. She said 20 contact teams have been constituted, of which nine were in the districts, for mounting surveillance.

Noting that as per the World Health Organisation prediction, the number of swine flu cases have gone up globally with a drop in temperature, the Minister said the virus has increased in winters and its spread has nothing to do with hygienic conditions. However, she said children, women and elderly were more vulnerable to the virus.

She said Delhi has made full preparations and there are separate wards for swine flu patients in three Central Government hospitals and 14 Delhi Government hospitals. Besides, an Act had been invoked to force five private hospitals to also have such wards. “There is adequate number of beds available in these wards. Also all these wards are air-conditioned and provided with television sets,’’ she said.

Earlier, Prof. Malhotra had stated that a record number of 246 new cases of swine flu were reported in Delhi on Wednesday. With nearly 7,000 people having been afflicted by the virus thus far and around 40 having died of the flu, he had alleged that the Delhi Government had been caught underprepared for dealing with the situation.

Making a special mention under Rule 280, the senior BJP leader had also alleged that there was shortage of beds, doctors and ventilators to deal with the rush of the patients, who had to wait for an hour to even undergo the tests.

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