‘Arogyasri not enough to tackle H1N1’

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Special Correspondent

Government totally confused in tackling health crisis: Jayaprakash Narayan

‘No clear-cut approach to contain the spread of swine flu’

Massive campaign suggested to create awareness about virus

HYDERABAD: The spread of H1N1 flu in the State has exposed the hollowness of the State’s health sector and utter confusion in the government in tackling a health crisis, said Lok Satta Party president Jayaprakash Narayan here on Tuesday.

“Though we don’t doubt the government’s sincerity, we resent its inefficiency in devising a clear-cut approach to contain the spread of the disease and give confidence to panic-stricken people,” he said.

‘No magic wand’

Addressing mediapersons, Dr. Narayan said that it was ridiculous on the part of the government to believe that by including the treatment of swine flu under Arogyasri, it had done enough to tackle it. The scheme could not be equated to a full-fledged public health set-up, he pointed out.

Arogyasri was not a magic wand to treat H1N1 flu though it would enable poor patients with serious flu complications to get tertiary treatment.

What was more important was a massive campaign to educate and create awareness about the virus and preventive measures to be taken.

Dr. Narayan said priority should be given to procure vaccine from abroad and administer it to people and health personnel as they would come in contact with affected persons. It would give confidence to doctors to treat H1N1 flu patients without fear, he added.

Strong message

The government and media should send a strong message to people that H1N1 was like any other influenza which could turn fatal only in some persons with predisposed health conditions and poor immunity.

Campaign should also focus on how use of Tamiflu without doctor’s prescription would do more harm to public health. Early diagnosis was a key to treat swine flu.

Mass vaccination

He also said panic buying of masks was uncalled for as once the virus was in the air they would not be of great help.

The only effective way was mass vaccination against H1N1 virus.



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