Swine flu tightens grip in Chandigarh

Chandigarh, Nov 15 (Inditop.com) There has been a sudden surge in the number of positive cases of influenza A (H1N1) virus in Chandigarh hospitals during the first fortnight of November.

By Oct 31, the total number of positive cases reported in the city were 57. But in just two weeks, 42 new cases of swine flu have been reported, taking the total number of cases to 99.

Besides, in November four private schools and two engineering colleges were closed for one week after their students tested positive for the infection.

“Most of the positive cases that we have got are of students studying in schools and colleges. Therefore, the health department has issued special instructions to all educational institutions here to curb the further spread of infection,” nodal officer for swine flu H.C. Gera told IANS.

“However, the overall situation is under our control and there is no need to panic. Our doctors and other para-medical staff are well equipped to tackle any emergency,” he said.

So far, over 460 suspected cases of swine flu had come to city hospitals, of which 99 tested positive. Of the positive cases, over 20 were doctors and around 40 were students. Four deaths due to the virus have been reported in the region.

The education department here has directed all class teachers to screen every child of the school and submit a report about their health to the principal within one hour after morning attendance.

“In case the teacher does not send back the child showing any flu-like symptom, disciplinary action would be initiated against him/her,” said an official.

In the wake of increasing number of cases, the health department has also increased its stock of Tamiflu medicine to 8,000 tablets. Until October, a stock of 5,000 tablets was being maintained.

Testing facility is available here in the virology department of Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) in Sector 12, which is catering to the needs of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir.