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Acute Encephalitis Syndrome Death Toll Rises In Bihar

by Sasikala Radhakrishnan on June 17, 2014 at 11:53 AM
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Acute Encephalitis Syndrome Death Toll Rises In Bihar

The outbreak of acute encephalitis syndrome has claimed 15 more lives in Bihar bringing up the death toll to 92.

The disease has started spreading to neighboring districts, and 13 children on Sunday and 2 children on Monday reportedly died of the disease across the state.


"The AES is now spreading its tentacles to new areas," said Deepak Kumar, principal secretary of the health department.

Victims are mostly from Muzaffarpur, followed by Sitamarhi and East Champaran districts, according to health officials.

However, cases have been reported from other districts as well, such as Vaishali, Samastpur, Sheohar, Begusarai, Gaya and Patna.

AES is a fatal mosquito-borne viral disease characterized by inflammation of the brain, and the victim presents with high fever.

Jitan Ram Manjhi , the chief minister of Bihar,. has ordered a financial assistance of Rs. 50,000 to the families of each victim from June 12.

Besides, AES treatment is being given at the two hospitals and Primary Health Centers in Muzaffarpur district for a total of 458 children out of which 79 have had full recovery from the disease.

Medical teams and 25 to 30 ambulances have been rushed to Muzaffarpur for transporting affected children to hospitals at Muzaffarnagar.

Moreover, food will be supplied to two attendants of each patient at the two hospitals at Muzafarnagar.

At the beginning of this year, the state government carried out a special vaccination drive to cover thousands of children against encephalitis.

Mr. Manjhi has sought financial aid from the WHO to find a permanent solution to the spread of this life-threatening disease every year in Bihar.

The central government has sent a team, comprising representatives of the Union Health Ministry and Indian Council of Medical Research, to Muzaffarpur to take stock of the situation, Health Minister Ramdhani Singh said.

Muzaffarpur civil surgeon Gayan Bhusan expressed hope that monsoon rains would provide relief to children suffering from the disease and would help to suppress the virus causing the disease.

Additional Secretary (Health) R P Ojha said that the Centre has decided to set up Multi-Disciplinary Resource Units (MRU) and Viral Diagnostic Laboratories (VDLs) in five districts for diagnosis, treatment and research of AES and related diseases and the expenditure will be borne by the central government for five years.

The Union Health Ministry will sign an agreement with the Indian Council of Medical Research for the proposed medical projects in Bihar, and the state government will send a draft MOU to that effect by June 26.

Source: Medindia

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