TN government ropes in experts to study 'black fungus' or mucormycosis

Mucormycosis is a deadly fungal infection being reported in COVID-19 patients.
Close up of Ma Subramanian in a white shirt
Close up of Ma Subramanian in a white shirt
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Tamil Nadu Health Minister Ma Subramaniam has said that the government has roped in multi-specialty experts and doctors to carry out a detailed study on Mucormycosis or Black Fungus. He said further action of the government will be based on their inputs.

He also said that around 70 lakh vaccines out of the 80 lakh vaccines allocated have reached the state and added that for those vaccinated in the age group of 18-44, over 12 lakh vaccines were bought for an amount of Rs 46 crore.

The minister said that these vaccines were being administered on priority basis to newspaper boys, vegetable vendors, destitutes and differently abled people.

Subramniam told IANS from Thoothukudi, where he was inspecting the Covid-19 measures: "I am on a visit to rural Tamil Nadu including Thoothukudi to get direct information regarding the working of Covid-19 care centres. The health department is taking the advice of a team of multi-specialty doctors regarding black fungus and will take further action based on their reports."

The minister said: "A section of experts are of the opinion that those undergoing dialysis and taking steroids are affected by black fungus, however in places like Europe where steroids are given for treatment, the disease is not seen."

The minister said that there are suspicions on inhalation of industrial oxygen and the poor quality oxygen made using contaminated water leads to such infections and hence a detailed research is required.

He said that the government has constituted a team of 10 multi-specialty experts to research the cases.

In fact the Covid-19 positivity has started reducing, he said comparing 33,800 cases on Monday with the 36,000 cases a day 10 days ago. He also said that in Chennai the positive cases have come down to 4,900 a day from the 7,000 positive cases a day ten days back."

The minister also said that the oxygen situation in the state is much better compared to the precarious position a few weeks ago. He said that the state has recovered following the arrival of oxygen from Rourkela and Jamshedpur after the steps taken by the Chief Minister M.K. Stalin.

Subramaniam said: "The Chief minister is taking feedback on the infrastructure required to upgrade the production of oxygen in the state so as to overcome the crisis if a third wave of the pandemic takes place."

The minister inspected the Covid-19 care centres, primary health centres, vaccination drive centres as also infrastructure available for treating Covid-19 patients. He was accompanied by the Social Welfare Minister Geetha Jeevan, Fisheries minister Anitha Radhakrishnan and Thoothukudi district collector, K. Senthil Raj.

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