49 Japanese encephalitis deaths reported in Assam
Guwahati: A total of 49 deaths and 190 cases of Japanese encephalitis have been reported till July 5 in Assam, where the transmission season is at its peak, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Saturday.Sarma said all the districts, except Kokrajhar, were currently under the influence of the disease and preventive steps being taken to combat the situation. Among the slew of measures put in place, the health department’s fear surveillance network — comprising multipurpose workers, malarial technical supervisors and accredited social health activists — has been instructed to collect blood samples. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity!”The state government has made arrangements for free transportation of suspected fever cases from the community to the district hospital, while reserving beds for JE and acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) in intensive care units and wards,” Sarma said at a press conference here. “It will also bear the cost of diagnosis and treatment of patients,” he said. The minister said the Elisa (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) kits for detection of the virus had been distributed in district hospitals and medical colleges, and awareness was being spread. Also Read – Encounter under way in Pulwama, militant killedIntensified fogging operations are being carried out in affected areas and a total of 1,094 affected villages have been covered under the fogging operation so far, he said. “A round-the-clock central control room has been made functional to deal with and monitor the situation closely, and all deputy commissioners directed to step up surveillance activities in coordination with urban local bodies and village panchayats,” Sarma said. He said vaccination through routine immunisation for children was currently going on, adding that adults had been vaccinated in 20 districts during 2016-17 and the remaining areas need to be covered under the programme.