Six die of Japanese encephalitis in Gaya, 21 more children test positive
Notwithstanding claims of mass immunisation for Acute Encephalitis Syndrome
including the more deadly Japanese Encephalitis, at least six deaths have been
reported. Another 21 patients suffering from the deadly disease are undergoing
treatment in the children ward of the Anugrah Narain Magadh Medical College and
With encephalitis cases
reported from Fatehpur, Atri and Manpur areas of the district, the deadly
disease threatens to take an epidemic form. Almost all the victims belong to
the marginalised sections of the society. More deaths cannot be ruled out, as
being poor, a sizeable number of affected people die at the hands of the quacks
and faith healers.
Confirming six deaths,
civil surgeon Dr Krishna Mohan Purvey said that three of the victims hail from
Gaya district while the other three are from neighbouring areas including
Aurangabad. The civil surgeon claimed that preventive steps have been taken in
the affected areas through fogging and awareness creation. Surveillance has
been stepped up and Asha workers have been galvanised to maintain surveillance
and counsel affected families.
Giving breakup of the
encephalitis patients undergoing treatment in the ANMMCH, the civil surgeon
said that of the 21 cases testing positive, two cases have been confirmed as
those of Japanese Encephalitis.
The remaining 19 are
cases of Acute Encephalitis Syndrome. Symptoms for both AES and Japanese
Encephalitis are more or less the same and as such clinical diagnosis was not
possible. The cases are confirmed only after proper test. The civil surgeon
claimed that test kits were available in adequate numbers.
RTI activist Brajnandan
Pathak has demanded development of specialised infrastructure for Encephalitis
Mangement and Rehabilitation. Even the survivors, in many cases suffer permanent
physical disability and mental retardation necessitating rehabilitation.
Encephalitis, it may be
recalled, has been hitting the area with annual frequency and as such a
comprehensive solution is required. Visit of Central and state level teams have
become ritualistic and more than decade long menace has not been effectively