Though there was no confirmed case of swine flu in Krishna district as on Friday, a 30-year-old woman having symptoms of the disease was undergoing treatment in the isolation ward opened in Andhra Hospital here, Krishna District Medical & Health Officer T.V. Ramana Rao told The Hindu on Friday.

The woman, whose permanent place of residence was stated to be Ibrahimpatnam but hailed from some other place, joined the Andhra Hospital on Thursday. On a request made by the hospital, Tamiflu capsules were sent by the GGH. It would be the responsibility of the hospital management to send her samples to Hyderabad for laboratory tests, he made clear. Andhra and Nagarjuna hospitals were the two private hospitals in the city designated to treat the patients.

Mr. Ramana Rao said there were no other suspect cases in the district. The public health wing of the VMC was entrusted with the responsibility of supervising the progress of the two persons who approached the GGH here sometime ago but were sent away after being given the capsules as prophylaxis. “They were showing recovery,” he said.

Nagarjuna Hospital chief administrator D. Seetaram said that the hospital was all set to deal with the cases. A special ward with ten beds was being prepared as per the instructions of the authorities. A three-doctor team had been designated to review the cases as and when they came in.

All entries to the hospital would be closed and the entry of people restricted to prevent spread of the infection.

With the Government allowing sale of Oseltamivir, the drug marketed by various pharma companies under different brand names, through retail shops having Schedule X licence, those having a proper prescription with doctor’s stamp and registration number can procure it now.

The Drug Control Administration authorities said retail sale of the drug will be allowed only in the shops that possessed the licence, under which a particular category of drugs could be sold.

Enough stock

The depots of Ranbaxy, Cipla and Hetero had good amounts of the drug, with the last having five retail shops in the city to sell it on its own. Hetero markets the drug under the brand bame “Fluvir”. Medical shops like Samatha Medical Hall and Rajendra Medical Store, both on Nakkala road, and Aditya Pharmacy at Patamata too had the drug ready for sale, the officials said.

Potturi Subba Rao of Rajendra Medical Store told The Hindu that instructions were given by the district administration that the anti-viral drug should be sold only to those who brought any photo identification of the patient. Each strip of 10 capsules would be available for Rs. 449.

On Friday, Nagarjuna Hospital, which was authorised to treat the suspect patients under Arogyasri scheme, approached the DCA authorities for obtaining Schedule X licence, while two wholesale dealers of One Town also applied for the same. “The drug can be sold only on the basis of a prescription given by a qualified physician.

A photo copy of the prescription should be retained by the medical store, besides maintaining a separate register of the sale details,” said S. Vijaya Kumar, Assistant Director of DCA.

The Krishna District Chemists and Druggists Association secretary general secretary P.S. Patnaik, welcoming the allowing of retail sale, feels that the Government should relax the condition of Schedule X licence, and, instead, allow sale of the drug through all shops that have even Schedule H licence. This, he says, would ensure that the drug is available in nearly half of the 600 retail shops.

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