Swine flu has so far claimed 61 lives in Punjab, with 30 succumbing to H1N1 virus in the State in past one month alone.
“Sixty-one persons have died due to swine flu in Punjab so far. The number of positive cases reported until yesterday stands at 163,” State’s nodal officer for Swine Flu Dr Gagandeep Singh Grover said.
Most of the deaths reported were from Bathinda, Ferozepur, Faridkot and Ludhiana followed by Moga and Muktsar districts, he said.
“We are going to notify this disease after which it will be mandatory to report the disease to authorities/health department. This will allow the authorities to monitor the disease and provide early warning of possible outbreaks,” Grover said.
The Punjab Government had a month back constituted a state-level advisory committee to review the situation of H1N1 in the state and give recommendations on prevention and control of the deadly disease.
“The committee has found that most of the people who have died were suffering from other chronic diseases and most patients reported to government hospitals only when their condition had worsened,” he said.
“Sometimes, patients who reported to Government hospitals died within a day or just few hours as they reported late,” he said.
The Nodal officer said an advisory has already been issued to hospitals to provide immediate treatment to suspected swine flu patients without conducting tests.
Meanwhile, in neighbouring Haryana swine flu has claimed five lives — two from Hisar, one each from Jind, Fatehabad and Sirsa districts, Dr Aprajita Sondh, Haryana State Surveillance Officer (IDSP), said, adding until yesterday, 59 positive cases were reported.