Amid allegations of a slackened response by the Health watch dogs, Ms. Sreemathy, Health Minister, refuted the charge, confirming that the cause of deaths reported from the Cherthala taluk in Kerala, was not due to chikungunya; on the contrary it was due to leptospirosis and other underlying illnesses like heart disease.
She said,"As per the medical investigations into the reported deaths due to chikungunya at Cherthala, most of those who died were suffering from chronic diseases, which were further complicated by the onset of viral fever."
According to her, the department had stepped in at the right time to institute control measures equipped to effectively check the spread of fever. Additionally, the services of medical and paramedical staff have been deployed. The stock of medicines has been replenished and mosquito control programmes are set into action.
The districts which are affected by chikungunya have been provided with 5 lakh each to begin the process of prevention. Entomologists and epidemiologists along with medical specialists are on the job at the affected areas, probing into the details of the outbreak. Vector control programmes are already on in full swing along with measures to plug the source of the infection as well as redouble fogging, to contain the spread of fever.