BHUBANESWAR: A 37-year-old male became the second case of H1N1 to be confirmed in Bhubaneswar on Tuesday, triggering fears of spread of the flu in the Capital City region. The man, a banking executive hailing from Bayababa Math area under Unit-9, was admitted to a private hospital here with suspected symptoms of influenza A H1N1. Doctors sent his swab samples to the Regional Medical Research Centre (RMRC) laboratory which confirmed the virus, Director, Public Health Kailash Das said.
Hospital authorities said the patient is in a stable condition and being provided treatment as per standard operating procedure for Swine Flu.
While detection of the second case of the flu has raised alert levels, possibilities of local transmission in the patient should be a cause of concern. Preliminary assessment has reportedly revealed that he had no recent travel history. However, there is a need to examine his contact in the recent days.
“As a bank officer, he should be dealing with varied customers. He might have come in contact with customers from outside the State, who could possibly have contracted the virus and transmitted on to him. We will have to make a detailed assessment of his recent contacts and travel history,” Das said.
Health authorities have now activated disease control protocols. While alert has been issued to hospitals and health institutions to get ready with facilities for treating H1N1 cases, surveillance has been intensified. With the flu spreading in New Delhi and neighbouring States like Andhra Pradesh, arrivals at airport and railway stations will be monitored. H1N1 has already claimed four lives in the National capital with cases rising to over 50.
The spread of the flu, if by community-level transmission, will pose more acute challenge for the health systems and authorities. The prevailing climatic conditions with dipping temperatures are also conducive for proliferation of the virus, experts stated.