Door-to-door survey shows 2.3% influenza-like illness patients positive in Bengaluru

A door-to-door survey was launched on April 23 in Karnataka to identify ILI patients and other vulnerable individuals.
Door-to-door survey shows 2.3% influenza-like illness patients positive in Bengaluru
Door-to-door survey shows 2.3% influenza-like illness patients positive in Bengaluru

More than 2% of patients with influenza-like illness (ILI) in Bengaluru who were screened have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The data is based on an initial analysis by the Karnataka COVID-19 State War Room following door-to-door surveillance for COVID-19 across the state.  

Out of 24.81 lakh households surveyed in Bengaluru Urban, 12,556 or  0.33% persons A presented with fever, cold and flu symptoms. However, according to the data, only 3007 ILI patients were tested for the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Out of this, 69 persons or 2.3% tested positive. “Very high ILI cases and high test positivity rate,” reads the official comments in the data sheet prepared by the State War Room.

The door-to-door survey, which began on April 23, to identify ILI  and other vulnerable patients and to contain the spread of COVID-19, has covered 89% of households in the state as of June 13. While more than 1.75 lakh people presented with fever, cold and flu symptoms, data shows that just over 44,000 or 25% were tested for COVID-19. However, only 123 or 0.3% people tested positive for the novel coronavirus in the state. 

The same data sheet also revealed that eight districts- Belagavi, Kalaburagi, Mandya, Raichur, Mysuru, Shivamogga,Ramanagara  and Gadag - need to carry out more tests among ILI patients due to low testing rate for this category of patients.

As per the latest testing guidelines issued by the Indian Council for Medical Research, an ILI

case is defined as one with acute respiratory infection with fever and cough. All those displaying ILI symptoms and have travel, contact history, are healthcare workers or are hospitalised can be tested for COVID-19.  

Karnataka, however, has gone a step further in identifying ILI patients as part of its door-to-door survey across. 

“The situation is nothing necessarily different from what is happening elsewhere. We are trying to categorise elederly patients with more comorbidities and are more susceptible. There should be early reporting of such cases and they should be brought to hospitals at the earliest,” Dr Sachinand, Vice Chancellor, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, who is heading the technical team to limit the number of COVID-19 cases in the state.

He added, “What we are doing better probably is surveillance. We are trying to catch cases of persons with ILI (influenza like illness) and SARI (Severe Acute Respiratory Infection) early. We are more vigilant about all these cases among 60+ age group patients. We have put in systems to report persons asking for drugs for fever, cough and cold from pharmacists. Further we are making all clinics report cases of ILI/ SARI through centralised portals. But in spite of these exercises, there are cases which are detected late and that is where we are facing problems. Nowadays we are seeing SARI/ILI cases are much more lethal in patients suffering with other comorbid conditions.” 

As of June 14, Karnataka has 7000 cases with 3955 patients who have already recovered and another 86 people have succumbed to the disease along with their comorbidities.

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