LUCKNOW: The Uttar Pradesh government has asked all schools of the state to put on hold morning assemblies from tomorrow to prevent the spread of swine flu.
"An advisory has been sent to all the district magistrates and commissioners in the state asking them to put on hold morning assembly prayers in all private and government schools in view of the swine flu scare," principal secretary health and family welfare Prashant Trivedi told PTI today.
The decision in this regard has been taken to check the spread of the disease and ensure that school children do not catch the infection, he said.
Till August 13 this year, 695 cases of swine flu had been reported in Uttar Pradesh. Of these, 21 have died, an official statement by the state director general, medical and health services has said.
To check the spread, the government has already formed district-level rapid response teams, which will consist of a public health specialist, a physician, an epidemiologist, a pathologist and lab technician.
"In all the district hospitals of the state, a 10-bed isolation ward has been established. The state surveillance unit and district surveillance unit are continuously monitoring the swine flu situation. Instructions have also been issued to combat any emergency-like situation pertaining to Influenza A (H1N1)," Trivedi said.
The officer said all the doctors and para-medical staff posted at the casualty wards and emergency wards who treat patients infected by H1N1 have been vaccinated.
"A toll free number 18001805145 has been activated. Apart from this, control rooms working round the clock are also being activated in various districts," he added.
According to the director of communicable diseases, Dr Badri Vishal, patients have been categorised as 'A', 'B' and 'C' according to their symptoms as per the directives of the Centre.
Only patients in the C-category have to be admitted to hospitals. Those who complain of breathing difficulty, chest pain, drowsiness, low blood pressure, blood
coming out with sputum and nails turning blue have been kept in the C-category.
Children who suffer from high fever, breathlessness and are not able to eat food have been put in the C-category, he said.
"However, those who complain of mild fever, cough, itching in throat, body pain, headache and diarrhoea need not undertake swine flu test. They come in the B-category.
"They should refrain from public interaction. These patients should be under observation for 24 to 48 hours, and then their health condition be re-evaluated," he said.
If those in A-category complain of high fever and severe throat itching, they should be isolated in their houses, the director said.
Some of the ways to prevent the spread of swine flu are by staying home if a person is sick, washing one's hands thoroughly and frequently, covering mouth and nose while sneezing or coughing, staying away from crowds, and reducing exposure within the household.