NEW DELHI: The Union Health Ministry on Friday admitted that there is a dearth of laboratories in the country for testing swine flu, which has so far claimed 965 lives. The flu has so far affected more than 17,000 people.
Union Health Minister J P Nadda said efforts were being made to set up laboratories in every state. Nadda said, “We have 21 laboratories for testing swine flu. But that is not enough. We are planning to set up H1N1 testing laboratories in all the states and financial provisions are being made for it.” Replying to questions in the Lok Sabha, the Health Minister said there were 965 deaths this season.
However, he said there was no need to panic, but people have to be fully alert. He said all the deaths may not have occurred only due to swine flu infection. But may also be due to co-morbid conditions such as lung diseases, liver disorder, kidney trouble, blood disorders, diabetes etc and because of compromised immunities.
“There was no shortage of medicine to treat swine flu (H1N1) affected people and it is available in government hospitals and dispensaries free of cost, Nadda said.
Nadda said he had personally spoken to several Chief Ministers, including Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Bihar CMs, and had taken stock of the situation.
He said even if a person takes swine flu vaccine, it was not foolproof and personal protection like mask and cleanliness have to be taken.
MCI Summons 500 Doctors
The Medical Council of India (MCI) has issued summons to more than 500 doctors following complaints that they had accepted bribes from Indian pharma companies, Union Health Minister J P Nadda said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha on Friday.
“The MCI has informed that it was in receipt of an anonymous complaint which has been referred by the Department of Pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemical and Fertilisers,” Nadda said.The complaint against several doctors for allegedly accepting cash payments, gifts and other inducements from ERIS Life Sciences Private Ltd, Ahmedabad, was received by the MCI on September 3, 2013.