A total fo 6701 cases and 226 deaths have been reported in the country till now (Feb 3) this year due to seasonal influenza, a respiratory viral infection with seasonal occurrences every year. Majority of cases have been reported from 11 states (and majority of deaths have been reported from Rajasthan, Gujarat and Punjab. Deaths have been in seen more in persons having co morbidities like diabetes, hypertension etc.
In a high powered meeting with senior officers of the Health Ministry, Ms Preeti Sudan, Secretary (HFW) reviewed the state of preparedness and action taken to deal with H1N1 influenza cases, in New Delhi. Additional Secretary (Health Sanjeeva Kumar, DCGI Dr S Reddy, Directors and Senior Officials from NCDC and representatives from EMR were also present in the meeting.
MOHFW deputed a Public Health Team to Rajasthan to assess the situation and assist the States in strengthening response to the increase in cases. Secretary has directed additional teams to Gujarat and Punjab to assist the states in outbreak response.
Regular review is being done on daily basis at the highest level and preparedness and response measures. These have been at the level of HFM, Secretary (Health), DGHS, AS (Health) JS (Public Health) and Director NCDC and in 2018-2019. Regular video conferences are being held to monitor the situation. States have been advised to involve district collectors in enhancing public awareness and outbreak response.
Advisory for preparedness to seasonal influenza A (H1N1) was issued from DGHS, JS (Public Health), and Director NCDC in 2018-2019. Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) and its State units have enhanced the surveillance for Influenza like Illness (ILI) and Severe Acute Respiratory Infections (SARI).
The States have been asked to follow the MoHFW guidelines (Risk Categorization, Clinical management Protocol, Use of masks for healthcare workers, Guidelines for vaccination with influenza vaccine and Providing Home care) of seasonal influenza