H1N1 virus loses steam

Swine flu appears to have loosened its grip on the city and the rate of infection has dropped to five per cent in the past week according to a senior scientist from the National Institute of Virology (NIV).

 The rate of infection was around 48 per cent in March, but the number of new cases and deaths has dipped due to the rising temperature.

“In the last week of March, the number of positive cases shot up to 148, but is barely 30 this week,” said Dr Pradip Awate, state swine flu surveillance officer.

Swine flu’s latest victim Bhaskar Shinde (48), died at KEM hospital after being admitted on April 16 and testing positive on April 19.

“He was on ventilator support and succumbed to multi-organ failure on Sunday,” said Dr Ashok Ingle, medical officer of District Hospital.

Indian Medical Association president Dr Bharati Dhore Patil said it is still necessary to take vaccines before the next influenza season.

Four hundred and sixty persons tested positive for H1N1 since March and the virus claimed 16 lives in the district since March 14. 

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