The minister stated that adequate preventive measures had been taken after one death from Japanese encephalitis virus was reported in Gadchiroli.
Mumbai: State health minister Eknath Shinde addressed a press conference on Thursday in the wake of a surge in viral diseases and encephalitis fever (chamki) which claimed 200 lives in Bihar. The minister stated that adequate preventive measures had been taken after one death from Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) was reported in Gadchiroli.
JEV is a mosquito-borne viral infection that was reported in Maharashtra’s Vidarbha region, with 7 confirmed cases, 15 suspected cases, and one confirmed death.
Suspected cases of JEV and Chandipura virus (CHPV) have been reporteded from Amravati, Yavatmal, Washim, Nagpur, Bhandara, Gadchiroli, Gondia, Latur and Beed. CHPV is known to result in the highest mortality and has a fatality rate of more than 50 per cent. Both infections are known to cause acute encephalopathy (severe brain damage), which in turn can be fatal.
Dr Pradip Awate, state surveillance officer and epidemiologist said, “We have conducted a survey in the Marathwada and Vidharbha region where we found eight suspected deaths but we are not sure whether they were due to CHPV or JEV. So we have categorised these vector-borne ailments into acute encephalitis syndrome (AES), which includes JEV and CHPV.”
“The reports of suspected cases and deaths are yet to be received. These viruses affect children below 15 years of age and sometimes, detection is improper, so we are very strict about the diagnosis and treatment when it comes to these viruses,” he said.