Spurt in swine flu cases puts city on the alert

Though these cases are sporadic here, health experts suggest precautionary measures

February 12, 2013 12:36 am | Updated 12:51 am IST

The sudden spurt in cases of swine flu in North Indian States has made health authorities here appeal to general public, especially the frequent travellers, to take precautions.

While cases of swine flu in Hyderabad have remained sporadic, the sudden surge in its numbers in New Delhi and nearby regions is a good enough reason for public here to take safety measures, doctors maintained.

According to health authorities, throughout India, close to 495 cases and nearly 95 deaths related to swine flu have been reported since January. At present, however, officials said that only 13 cases have swine flu have been reported in Hyderabad since January.

With the capital having a large travelling population and Kumbh Mela in full swing, health officials here fear of a probable surge in swine flue cases. “So far, swine flu cases in Hyderabad are sporadic. But, public need to take basic precautions because there is a huge population that travels. Nobody can afford to take things easy,” says State- chief Co-ordinator for Swine Flu, Dr. K. Subhakar.

Basic precautions like maintaining cough etiquette, personal hygiene including frequent hand wash, avoiding consuming stale food have to be observed. Doctors have advised that if cough, body pains and high grade fever does not subside after 48 hours, then patients have to seek medical advice from a general practitioner.

Experts also point out that Hyderabad could escape the swine flu virus because the temperatures have started to rise even as the cold wave is prevalent in North India. “The swine flu virus can sustain for long durations in cold and that’s why the cases have started to increase in New Delhi, Gurgaon and nearby regions. Hyderabad has just started to come out of the winter cold,” says Dr. K. Subhakar.

Doctors suggested that those who have to travel, elderly, pregnant women and children have the option of opting for swine flu vaccines. Already, the health care workers in Government hospitals in Hyderabad have received swine flu vaccinations. Doctors have advised public to get inoculated only under medical advice.

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