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5 deaths take India's swine flu toll to 262

IANS
Sep 22, 2009 at 11:22pm IST

New Delhi: Five swine flu deaths, including three in Karnataka, were reported on Tuesday, taking India's total toll due to the contagious influenza A (H1N1) virus to 262, health authorities said.

Also, 324 new swine flu cases were reported in the country, taking Five swine flu deaths, including three in Karnataka, were reported on Tuesday, taking India's total toll due to the contagious influenza A (H1N1) virus to 262, health authorities said.

Also, 324 new swine flu cases were reported in the country, taking the total number of people affected so far to 8,477.

THE FLU SCARE: As Karnataka is seeing a surge in swine flu deaths, authorities are now planning clinical audits.

According to health ministry officials, the three deaths in Karnataka were reported between September 18-19.

"The laboratory confirmation (received Tuesday) showed that all the deaths were due to swine flu," an official said.

With this, Karnataka's toll has reached 82.

Delhi recorded one death Tuesday.

A 20-year-old woman, who was admitted to the Safdarjung Hospital in New Delhi, succumbed to the virus,state nodal officer Anjan Prakash told IANS.

With this death, the toll in the Indian capital has gone up to nine.

Maharashtra, which tops the list of swine flu deaths and cases in the country, also reported one death, taking its total number of deaths to 107.

The officials said one death was reported from Gujarat, but it was yet to be confirmed if the patient died due to the virus.

In Ghaziabad, neighbouring the national capital, a public school had to close down its primary section after two students were reported to be affected with the flu.

"Two students were reported to be infected with the virus. Both are now fine and responding well to the treatment in Delhi hospitals. As a precautionary measure, we have closed down the primary section till September 28," said school principal Meeta Rai of Delhi Public School at Indirapuram.

As per school officials, there are around 3,000 students in the primary wing of the school.

As Karnataka is seeing a surge in swine flu deaths, authorities are now planning clinical audits.

"The purpose behind the clinical audit is to find the actual causes behind the death of 80 people due to H1N1 influenza in the state," Usha Vasunkar, director of Karnataka's Health and Family Services, told IANS.

"We've taken a decision to have a clinical audit on Monday. During our earlier survey, we found that 40 per cent of the swine flu victims had co-morbid factors (pre-existing illness) and many died due to late admission. However, the audit will give a clear picture of the actual cause for deaths," she added.

The profile of each victim, which includes name, age, sex, symptoms and cause of death, will be studied by a panel of experts during the clinical audit.

Of Tuesday's 324 new cases, the national capital recorded as many as 108 cases.

According to Delhi Health Minister Kiran Walia, 2,065 people have so far been admitted and treated in Delhi government hospitals. "More than 90 per cent of these patients have been successfully treated and discharged," she said.

As many as 1,018 children have been treated for influenza A (H1N1).

The Delhi government, meanwhile, also announced that Tamiflu, the anti-influenza medicine, will be sold at authorised retail chemists. The central government had last week allowed "restricted sale" of Tamiflu through over 500 chemists.

The decision to allow Tamiflu sales was taken during a meeting held by Walia after the state government received notification from the central government.

"The government has implemented the notification of the Indian government to allow sale of Tamiflu at the authorized outlets of authorized Schedule 'X' chemists in the capital to facilitate the patients of swine flu as well as to curb the swine flu epidemic," Walia said.

Swine flu cases were also detected in Maharashtra (67), Tamil Nadu (43), Andhra Pradesh (28), Karnataka (20), Gujarat (2) and Haryana (1).

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