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First swine flu death in Nepal

DAMAKANT JAYSHI, KATHMANDU: A Kathmandu resident who had been admitted to hospital with symptoms of swine flu died in a capital’s hospital on Saturday, officials from the Ministry of Health confirmed.

They also said this is the first instant of a patient dying of swine flu this season. Last year, 18 people had died due to swine flu.

The 50-year old woman, a long-time asthma patient, was also detected with pneumonia after being admitted to the Kathmandu Model Hospital last week. She had not left the capital in recent times. This had led the medical fraternity to conclude that swine flu has already affected several people in the Kathmandu Valley, although the actual spread of the disease is not yet known.

As of Friday, the number of people who have tested positive for the swine flu rose to 31, and of these, 23 are from the capital, reports said.

The medical fraternity here is divided about the exact reach and impact of the swine flu virus.

Some, like Dr Sher Bahadur Pun of the Tropical Hospital in Kathmandu warn of grave consequences if the government did not take measures to control the spread. There are concerns about the adequate supply of flu medicines as well.

However, Dr. Baburam Marasini, director of Epidemiology and Disease Control Division at the Department of Health Services, said the disease was not yet an epidemic and the situation was under control.

The government has set up health desks at major transit points along the border with India and also at Kathmandu’s international airport to screen people. (The Hindu)

Published Date: Sunday, March 1st, 2015 | 09:46 PM

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