Skip to content

India battles to contain 'brain fever' as death toll approaches 570

By Nita Bhalla, Thomson Reuters Foundation
7/27/2014 (2 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

In West Bengal, at least 111 people have died from both strains

Almost 570 people in India have died after contracting encephalitis, commonly known as "brain fever," health authorities said on Friday, warning the death toll may rise further.

Floods also lead to the contamination of water sources such as wells, leaving many people with no option but to use the same dirty water for both drinking and washing.

Floods also lead to the contamination of water sources such as wells, leaving many people with no option but to use the same dirty water for both drinking and washing.

Highlights

By Nita Bhalla, Thomson Reuters Foundation
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
7/27/2014 (2 years ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: Brain fever, India, epidemic, virus strains


span id="tab-container-landscape">(Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Outbreaks of both Acute Encephalitis Syndrome and Japanese Encephalitis are common during India's monsoon season and claim hundreds of lives each year. But this year, major outbreaks - usually most concentrated in the northern states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar - have spread to other regions such as West Bengal and Assam - killing 568 people. Live Catholic, Shop Catholic -- by going here --
In West Bengal, where at least 111 people have died from both strains, a senior health official said authorities were taking emergency steps to contain the outbreak. "We have sounded an alert in seven districts and cancelled the leave of all health department officials," West Bengal's Health Services Director B.R. Satpathy told Thomson Reuters Foundation. Encephalitis is an inflammation of the brain, caused by any one of a number of viruses, says the World Health Organization. Symptoms include high fever, vomiting and, in severe cases, seizures, paralysis and coma. Infants and elderly people are particularly vulnerable. It is most often caused from eating or drinking contaminated food or water, from mosquito or other insect bites, or through breathing in respiratory droplets from an infected person. The virus most commonly occurs in poor, flood-hit areas, where monsoons have left pools of stagnant water, allowing mosquitoes to breed and infect villagers. Floods also lead to the contamination of water sources such as wells, leaving many people with no option but to use the same dirty water for both drinking and washing. Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said last month he was extremely distressed by the "runaway conquest of encephalitis" and ordered all children in vulnerable states to be vaccinated against the virus and for a proportion of hospital beds to be dedicated to encephalitis patients. In 2012, the Indian government launched a national program to prevent and control the virus. This included more widespread vaccination programs, strengthening surveillance and improving access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation facilities. There were 1,273 deaths in India due to encephalitis in 2013 compared to 440 deaths from malaria and 193 from dengue fever, government statistics show.

---


'Help give every student and teacher Free resources for a world-class moral Catholic education'


Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for FEBRUARY 2017
Comfort for the Afflicted.
That all those who are afflicted, especially the poor, refugees, and marginalized, may find welcome and comfort in our communities.


Comments


More Asia Pacific

Indian Christian martyred following shocking punishment in freezing winter pond Watch

Image of Christians are often tortured in India.

A Christian couple was punished for refusing to denounce their faith. The penalty for their faith is beyond cruel and resulted in one man ... continue reading


Teen reveals signs of STIGMATA and weeps blood DAILY Watch

Image of The newest face of the Stigmata.

Akhilesh Raghuvanshi has been bleeding from his eyes and hairline since he was 10-years-old in what many believe is a rare stigmata ... continue reading


Are they ALL pedophiles? Shocking statistic from reveals rate of clergy sex abuse in Church Watch

Image of The Commission is established to investigate systematic abuse in various agencies including the government and Church.

About seven percent of Church staff in Australia could be pedophiles, alleges a study performed by Australian authorities. The study ... continue reading


'I am ashamed of the things I read about the Philippines' - Archbishop laments the violent clash between Duterte's policies and the toll on the Church Watch

Image of Protestors call for an end to violence.

Since Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs began, at least 2,250 drug suspects have been killed by police and at least 3,700 ... continue reading


Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte attacks the Catholic Church - Claims hypocrisy, corruption and ignominy Watch

Image of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte tells bishops he will resign if they do.

In a heated speech following a meeting with the grieving families of fallen police officers on Tuesday, Philippines President Rodrigo ... continue reading


Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.