As reports of swine flu begin doing rounds, Krishna district health officials are taking all precautionary measures to curb the same. In addition to starting a campaign in bus and railway stations, officials have also implemented screening points in the airport and railway station to screen people and determine who may be afflicted with swine flu.
There have been several reports of late, suggesting that a few individuals presented with swine flu Chittoor, Tirupati and Visakhapatnam. In addition, one death due to swine flu has also been reported. The same has been confirmed to TNM by the Superintendent of King George Hospital in Visakhapatnam, Dr G Arjuna.
Earlier in the first week of October a woman from Kaikaluru village in Krishna district who was reportedly undergoing treatment for cancer in the Chittoor Campus of Vellore Christian Medical College and Hospital was diagnosed with H1N1. Weeks after receiving treatment for the same, she has now recovered from swine flu according to an official in the district’s health department.
Officials are also keeping an eye the temple town of Vijayawada as Dussehra festival will attract many devotees from across the country who will flock to see the festivities at the Kanaka Durga Temple. This could also possibly mean that more cases could come to light.
Speaking to TNM Krishna District Medical and Health Officer Dr Ramesh said, “Though there have been no cases of swine flu reported in the district, we have alerted all the hospitals and health department officials as a precaution and all the major hospitals are equipped with the required setup to treat anyone if they should present with the same."
He further added that a campaign had been launched to create awareness among the general public, “Today we have launched a campaign on swine flu in public spaces. It includes distributing pamphlets, making announcements and placing ads. All the officials concerned and paramedics will be participating."
Ramesh also informed TNM that medical screening points have been in function since last week in Vijayawada at the railway station, bus stand and at the airport in Gannavaram.
Krishna District Epidemiologist Dr Nageshwar Rao informed TNM that in the region around fourteen community health centers, a medical college and government hospital had allocated around 100 beds in special wards. He also stated that 15 specialists had been appointed as nodal officers.
“The most common symtpoms of swine flu are high fever, sore throat, runny nose, myalgia (bodyache), cough , headache, vomiting,” stated Dr Nageshwar.
Swine flu is caused by the influenza A virus. A vaccine is available against the same but is usually only administered to those who may come into frequent contact with infected persons (namely doctors and other medical personnel). It is transmitted to an individual from an infected person through air droplets.
Taking proper personal hygiene measures and using special masks are preventive measures one can take.