PM directs Health Ministry to contain Jajarkot epidemic

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KATHMANDU, APR 16 – Prime Minister Sushil Koirala has directed the Ministry of Health and Population to carry out works at war footing for the prevention and treatment of swine flu that has spread in Jajarkot district.

The Prime Minister issued such directive to the Health Minister Khagaraj Adhikari, the Health Secretary Shanta Bahadur Shrestha, the Director General of the Department of Health Services Dr Senendra Uprety and the Chief of the Epidemiology Division of the Health Ministry Dr Baburam Marasini who he had called at his office in Baluwatar.

“Dispatch a team of specialists from the Capital too so that there is no further loss of lives,” PM Koirala told the Health Ministry officials.

On the occasion, the Prime Minister, in light of the Nepalis living in remote places of the country having to die untimely death because of treatable diseases due to the tendency of the health workers not going to the places they have been assigned to, also directed the concerned officials to also make appropriate arrangements to retain the health human resources in places where they are sent.

In the meeting with the Prime Minister, Health Minister Adhikari apprised the PM of the efforts being made to contain the disease spread in Jajarkot. The Health Minister recently made an inspection of the affected areas in Jajarkot and returned to the Capital with a team of health workers with samples of the cough, blood and stool of the patients for laboratory examination.

Director General Dr Uprety said two teams of specialists has been sent to the affected area from Kathmandu after it was established that the disease that broke out in Jajarkot was swine flu. He added that health workers have been mobilised now under the leadership of the Regional Public Health Director. Similarly, a team each from the Nepal Army and the Patan Academy of Health Sciences is also mobilised in the area.

Also mobilised are four MBBS doctors at the District Hospital, Jajarkot. Also today, a team from the National Academy of Medical Science has reached Jajarkot.

A World Health Organisation team is in Jajrkot working to treat the patients and contain the disease.

It is also stated that 100 thousand tablets of medicine useful for the prevention and treatment of swine flu is expected to reach Jajarkot today.

The team comprising the Health Minister has stated that death due to the disease has stopped after the distribution of the medicine and it is expected that the epidemic would be contained within a couple of days.