At least 30 children lost their lives due to encephalitis in last 48 hours at Gorakhpur’s BRD Hospital, reported news agency ANI. “Total 30 deaths in last 48 hours. Supply of liquid oxygen was disrupted yesterday due to pending payment. Requested suppliers not to disrupt supply,” said District Magistrate Rajeev Rautela.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s Lok Sabha constituency of Gorakhpur has seen at least 114 deaths due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) this year alone. AES is an umbrella classification under which comes the diseases Japanese Encephalitis (JE), water-borne encephalitis and scrub typhus, among others. As an MP, Yogi Adityanath had actively raised the issue.
In the wake of this incident, an inquiry committee has been set up to ascertain the exact causes of the deaths and it has been asked to submit its report by August 12 evening.
In an interview to the Indian express, Ravindra Kumar, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Gorakhpur, said the Case Fatality Rate (CFR) is reducing with each passing year. “The CFR last year was more than 20 percent and this year we have reduced it to 16 percent. In 2015, the CFR was somewhere near 30 percent,” CMO said, adding that the threat of JE has nearly ended although it has, like lsat year, claimed three deaths this year. “In the months of August to October, people are more prone to acquiring some form of AES. Therefore we are trying to make people aware of the importance of cleanliness, drink clean and boiled water, and should rush to hospital if there is fever,” said the CMO.
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