H1N1 toll touches six, 20 more test positive

Swab test of 39-year-old who died on March 19 returns positive; docs say rising mercury will put end to virus
The grip of the H1N1 virus does not appear to be letting up as another 20 persons tested positive during screening of  1,505 people in the district yesterday. Doctors are hoping that the rising summer temperatures will work in their favour and gradually reduce the number of cases.

Recuperating: The isolation ward for swine flu patients at Naidu Hospital.
Pic/Krunal Gosavi 

The death toll has now risen to six, as doctors confirmed that the swab test of a 39-year-old patient, who died on March 19 at Sahyadri Hospital, tested positive.

"The victim, Sanjay Joshi, was admitted to the hospital at 11.13 am and succumbed at around 10 pm the same day," said Dr Ashok Ingle, medical officer of District Hospital.

So far, the number of positive cases in the district has risen to 116, of which six have succumbed, 23 are currently in isolation wards, 25 are admitted in at various hospitals, and the remaining are undergoing treatment as out patients.

Of the 20 positive cases detected yesterday, 17 are in the city and three from Pimpri-Chinchwad. Two patients are currently on ventilator support at Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital and Ruby Hall respectively. The condition of patients on ventilators at Aditya Birla Hospital, Global Hospital, KEM hospital and Prayag Hospital continues to be critical.

"Sale of vaccines, especially Vaxiflu-S and masks has increased considerably. People are becoming more alert and cautious. We have enough stock of Tamiflu and patients need not panic," said Vijay Changedia, secretary of Chemists Association Pune District. Doctors believe that the situation will improve in a few weeks and the changing weather will work in their favour.

"Though the city has witnessed a sudden increase in positive cases, people should not worry as the temperature is rising and the numbers will gradually come down within two or three weeks as viruses cannot survive high temperatures," said Dr Sham Satpute, assistant medical officer of health at PMC.

"Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar has called for a meeting today at 12.30 pm at Vidhan Bhavan in Mumbai to discuss the issue of swine flu management," said Dr Ajay Chandanwale, dean of BJ Medical College and Sassoon General Hospital.

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