It is no time for trading charges on swine flu incidence and politicising the issue as the deadly virus claims lives.
It is incumbent on the part of the citizens to keep their environs clean as communicable diseases spread fast in unhygienic conditions. The masks being used as a precautionary measure should be of standard quality and made available free of cost to people.
People have an equal or more responsibility in keeping their localities clean. Those in authority should take active interest in combating swine flu and other diseases, keeping away from politics and politicising the issue. Continuous monitoring of swine flu incidence, better management of referral hospitals, adequate supply of medicines and bringing more hospitals under the purview of designated hospitals category for treating swine flu cases are some steps to be taken.
Our rulers have poor understanding about health care and for them, health care means only medical care i.e., the care offered by the corporate sector.
However, corporate medical care too is just selective and not total medical care. The government is not prepared to tackle the swine flu pandemic since all is well for them as long as there is no emergency.
When the first reports on swine flu came, the government should have developed protocols and prepared institutions apart from galvanising the entire health care system.
Also, for a pandemic, it is not only the medical department alone but others need to gear up.
The school education wing should be used for promotion of health care, municipal units to ensure hygiene and information and broadcasting for dissemination of information.
In short, the entire government machinery should gear up to face the pandemic which did not happen in our State at all.
Dr. Araveeti Rama Yogaiah,
Addl. Director, Health (Retired) (Brief letters can be emailed to ‘ firstname.lastname@example.org’)