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Three fresh cases shoot UP swine flu count to 19

By Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow
August 14, 2009 01:37 IST
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With three fresh samples testing positive, the number of swine flu cases in Uttar Pradesh has shot up to 19 on Thursday. "We had tested about 27 samples out of which 3 turned out to be positive," Dr T N Dhole, head of the Mircrobiology department at the Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences said.

Meanwhile, 20 fresh samples have arrived at the SGPGIMS laboratory that was the state's only authorized centre to determine the dreaded virus. However, testing of the new samples had to be put on hold due to non–availability of testing kits. According to Dhole, "The new kits would arrive from Delhi on Friday, so we would be able to complete the remaining tests by Friday evening."

Significantly, each kit which has a capacity of testing 80–90 samples, costs about Rs. 1,93,000. "There was no worry on the fund front as the state government had on Thursday sanctioned sufficient funds to purchase enough kits for carrying out at least 1000 tests," he pointed out.

"The state government is ready to give more funds as and when required for the purpose," he added. Meanwhile of the three fresh cases, one belonged to Lucknow, while the other two were from Kanpur and Varanasi. "Now that takes the number of affected patients to 11 in Lucknow, three each in Kanpur and Varanasi , besides one in Allahabad", Dhole said. Despite the shooting numbers in Lucknow , chief medical officer Dr. A K Shukla was very clear that there was no need to panic . "Fortunately, none of the cases were in the secondary stage of the infection," he pointed out.

However , none of the cases found to be positive had agreed to get hospitalized. "Their families did not want the detected cases to be hospitalized as they felt they were well equipped to keep the patients quarantined in their respective homes," the CMO said . "But we are ensuring adequate supply of medicines and we are also maintaining a round the clock vigil on each of the patients," he added.

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Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow