After death of four specially-abled boys, 100+ hospitalised with similar symptoms in suspected cholera outbreak in Indore

Probe suggests contaminated water causing health issues among boys and youngsters 2-3 km apart; city launches water testing drive at schools, shelters, and hostels.
After death of four specially-abled boys, 100+ hospitalised with similar symptoms in suspected cholera outbreak in Indore
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BHOPAL: Two days after four specially-abled boys died at an orphanage in Indore, the country’s cleanest and first water-plus city, due to suspected food poisoning, over 100 minors and youngsters have been hospitalised with similar symptoms at two different government hospitals in the city.

60 more specially-abled boys from the Yug Purush Dham Ashram (the same orphanage where four boys died on Monday and Tuesday) of Malharganj area, were admitted at Chacha Nehru children hospital in the last two days, 55 youths (including girls) preparing for armed forces recruitment at a private coaching in Chitawad area were admitted at the MY Hospital with similar vomiting, diarrheal and acute dehydration symptoms.

The 55 youngsters who are now stated stable at the MY Hospital, were residing in 3-4 private hostels in Chitawad area and preparing for armed forces recruitment at a common private coaching.

According to Dr Sanjay Dixit, the Dean of the MGM Medical College (with which the MY Hospital and Chacha Nehru Hospital are associated) 12 out of the 60 boys (all specially-abled) were discharged from the hospital upon improvement in their condition on Thursday, while the 48 others are still under treatment at the same children hospital.

Informed sources added that two severely malnourished and infected boys are admitted at the hospital’s ICU.

Initial diagnoses of diarrhea, vomiting, and acute dehydration prompted health officials to conduct Hanging Drop tests on fecal samples, suggesting suspected cholera among some patients. Further tests are pending to confirm the outbreak. “We are awaiting the results of some other tests for ascertaining whether it’s a confirmed case of cholera outbreak or not,” a key health department official in Indore told TNIE.

With primary probe by the special probe panel (headed by an additional district magistrate) pointing towards possible consumption of contaminated water being behind the sudden health problems with the boys and youngsters (within a distance of two to three kilometers), a special drive has been launched in the city to test water samples, particularly from schools, shelter homes and hostels.

Total 40 samples of water were collected from different areas of the country’s cleanest and first water plus city, including Bhawarkuan, Juni Indore, Chitwad, Navlakha, Malharganj and Rau and Mhow areas on Thursday.

In a related development, the Indore district collector issued a show cause notice to the Yug Purush Dham orphanage on Thursday, seeking why stringent action shouldn’t be taken against the institution for lapses which led to the death of the specially-abled boys there. The notice clearly mentioned delayed information to the administration about the health problems among the boys having played a key role in the deaths.

Six boys died at the orphanage between June 30 and July 2, out of which four who died on July 1 and 2, died following health complications caused by suspected food poisoning, which now looks to be turning into suspected cholera.

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