VIJAYAWADA:It seems that the state government has failed to learn lessons from the previous swine flu outbreak. Winter is still on, but no proper arrangement for diagnosing the infection have been made, so far, in government hospitals to combat its outbreak. Even though a few government general hospitals received swine flu protective kits, the basic testing kits are not present in a majority of the hospitals.
Till date this year, seven patients from AP were diagnosed with swine flu, two of them died and another five were being treated at various hospitals. In 2016, 11 patients from AP were diagnosed with swine flu. Three of them died. In a recent review meeting on the vector-bourne disease, Health Minister Kamineni Srinivassaid Kerala, Karnataka and Telangana had been registering increased number of cases and instructed officials to keep a watch on movement from high-risk areas. However, the airports of Visakhapatanam and Gannavaram lack facilities for screening passengers for swine flu.
“The infection isn’t rampant in our state. In case there is any need for the screening, then we will implement it on priority basis,” said G Madhusudhan Rao, Director of Gannavaram Airport.
Testing kits are available only at King George Hospital in Visakhapatnam and Sri Venkateswara Institute of Medical Sciences (SVIMS) in Tirupati. And only the two centres have got isolation chambers.
The main reason for the delay in supply of the kits is that the state government has placed orders only with a single supplier, despite there being many others players in the industry.