Sixty-two swine flu cases have been reported across Mumbai between July 1 to 24 compared to two cases which were last month, as per the BMC health department. Meanwhile, 50 cases of dengue and 55 cases of hepatitis have also been reported during the same period. Health officials said the cases of influenza are increasing and have urged citizens to look for H1N1 symptoms including fever, cough/ sore throat/throat irritation, body ache, headache, diarrhoea/ vomiting usually these symptoms subside on taking symptomatic treatment and there is no need for investigation.
“However if the patient belongs to a high-risk group i.e. pregnant women, diabetic, hypertensive and symptoms aggravate or if patients develop additional symptoms like breathlessness, chest pain/ haemoptysis (blood in vomiting), bluish discolouration of nails and in children irritation and drowsiness then there is need for investigation and hospitalization,” said Dr Mangala Gomare, Executive Health Officer.
Senior health officials said a higher proportion of H1N1 patients had been observed.“We are taking appropriate action to enhance surveillance. Prevention and control measures are being implemented,” Dr Pradeep Awate, state surveillance officer, said.
Dr Bharesh Dedhia, Chief, Department of Critical Care at P. D. Hinduja Hospital & Medical Research Centre, Khar said It is affecting old and young people alike, males and females equally and healthy people and people with multiple medical issues due to which one cannot predict. no predilection. Moreover, most people are getting a high fever, headache and body ache, sore throat, and nasal congestion.
“The virus was always around since 2009, but it was only periodically infecting us. But now I think with possibly a new variant, no mask mandates and many people roaming around, it has been picked up easily and then it is spreading very fast. Also
Interestingly, this is the highest surge since 2009-10 that we have seen in the city. Also, a few cases are more critical this year and require hospitalization. We believe this is probably due to a different variant from the regular H1NI that is easily transmissible and causing the surge,” he said.
Senior paediatricians from the private hospital said they have noted viral diseases such as swine flu, dengue, and hand, foot and mouth disease amongst the children. “There is a mixed bag, with children being detected with flu, dengue, and hand, foot and mouth disease—which is a mild contagious infection characterised by sores in the mouth and rashes on hands and feet. This season we are seeing a share of H1N1 cases,”
Dr Wasim Khot, consultant for infectious diseases at Global Hospital in Parel said, as the influenza cases rise as expected during the monsoon it is important to stick to the basics. Use a mask, maintain social distancing and sanitize your hands frequently. Maintaining proper cough etiquette covering the mouth and nose while coughing or sneezing.
“If you are sick and have flu-like symptoms you should stay at home and don't mix in the crowd. Those who are at high risk of severe disease elderly people and those with chronic diseases should discuss with the healthcare providers about the annual influenza vaccination,” he added.
Advisory for prevention of H1N1:
1. Cover nose while sneezing and coughing with a handkerchief or tissue
2. Wash your hands often with soap and water
3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth
4. Avoid visiting crowded places
5. Do no take self-medication and consult a nearby BMC health post/dispensary/hospital immediately for treatment if there is a history of high fever, difficulty in breathing, or blue color of skin or lips. Treatment should not be delayed because it leads to complications and risks death
Advisory for prevention of vector-borne diseases - Dengue, Malaria
1. As the number of dengue cases rises, all precautions must be taken to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes. Use of bed nets, window screens, and complete clothing wearing are advised to avoid mosquito bites.
2. Prevent larva breeding by keeping the premises and surrounding area clean, clearing the odd articles such as tins, thermocol boxes, coconut shells, tires, unused articles, etc
Advisory for prevention of water-borne diseases - Gastro, Hepatitis, Typhoid
1. Avoid street food consumption
2. Hand washing or sanitization should be done before consuming food