Kolkata: A 28-year-old homemaker from Kalyani died on Saturday of swine flu at a Kolkata hospital, taking this year’s death toll from this disease to two. A week ago, a four-year-old boy, also from Nadia, had died in a Kolkata hospital of the same disease.
Doctors are surprised at the early spread of the virus, which usually thrives during monsoon.
Sima Ghosh had been ref-erred to Salt Lake’s AMRI from a local nursing home on April 17 with acute respiratory distress.
Earlier a 10-month-old and a four-year-old — were being treated for the virus. While the 10-month-old, from Howrah’s Bally, was recovering and may be discharged soon, four-year-old Soham Ghosh died at AMRI’s Mukundapur facility.
A test for the H1N1 virus conducted on April 18 on Sima turned out positive.
The Nadia CMOH confirmed her death on Sunday. Her death certificate mentions H1N1 influenza, severe respiratory problem and distress syndrome with cardio-respiratory failure.
In the first reported H1N1 deaths in Bengal this year, a 28-year-old Kalyani housewife died in AMRI Salt Lake on Saturday due to H1N1 influenza. Her death, Nadia CMOH Tapas Roy confirmed on Sunday, comes only a week after Soham Ghosh (4), also from Nadia’s Taherpur, died in a Kolkata hospital due to H1NI infection.
Kalyani resident Sima Ghosh (28) was referred from a local Nursing home to AMRI Salt Lake on April 17, with acute respiratory distress. A test next day confirmed H1N1.
She died on Saturday afternoon. Her death certificate mentions H1N1 influenza, severe respiratory problem and distress syndrome with cardio-respiratory failure.
As of now, at least 10 patients are being treated for H1N1 infection at various hospitals across the city. “There are three more patients detected with H1N1. All of them are from Kolkata. They are being treated in the isolation ward and the condition of all three are critical,” said a source in AMRI, Salt Lake. Apollo Gleneagles Hospitals has treated around 16 swine flu cases in the last month, sources in the hospital said no confirmed H1N1 patient is admitted there currently.
According to state health department sources, the number of H1N1 cases since January could have crossed 40. Though health department officials say there is nothing unusual about a few stray cases throughout the year, they claim 40 cases in four months can’t be ignored as “stray cases”. Also, virologists and health workers are taken aback at the early appearance of the virus, which thrives during monsoon and starts circulating by May. “It is too early for the virus to strike. And if the number is not few and far between, it should be a matter of concern for all stakeholders. The susceptible ones should be extremely cautious,” said Dr Amiya Hati, former director, School of Tropical Medicine.
The Nadia CMOH, Tapas Roy, said, “There have been two H1N1 deaths in Nadia within a week. The NUHM (National Urban Health Mission) team visited the spot in Kalyani and we have taken all required steps,” he added. Kalyani Municipality chairperson Sushil Talukdar said, “The municipal corporation will step up its cleanliness measures and try to drive out pigs from residential areas. The drive will start on Monday.”
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Though the virus originated from pigs, it now lives in humans and the transmission mode has become human-to-human. A major H1N1 outbreak across the country in 2015 claimed at least 25 lives, having affected around 500. The virus did not have a significant effect in 2016, with only sporadic cases reported.