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    How Uttar Pradesh tackled the encephalitis menace

    Synopsis

    Japanese encephalitis and acute encephalitis syndrome were major health challenges in eastern UP and poor health infrastructure proved to a serious handicap for the Yogi Adityanath government in 2017.

    PTI
    In 2018, deaths due to AES dropped to 166 from 511 in 2017. The number of encephalitis cases reported in 14 districts of eastern UP also dropped from 2,247 in 2,017 to 1,047 cases last year.
    (This story originally appeared in on Jun 23, 2019)
    New Delhi:

    While Bihar struggles to contain acute encephalitis syndrome, the eastern part of neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, which has also been a problem area, has seen a significant improvement with an over 67% drop in deaths due to the disease in 14 most-affected districts.

    Japanese encephalitis and acute encephalitis syndrome were major health challenges in eastern UP and poor health infrastructure proved to a serious handicap for the Yogi Adityanath government in 2017 when a spate of child deaths — not all related to the disease — rocked BRD medical college in August, 2017.

    More than 500 children died that year in Gorakhpur and its neighbourhood with as many as 14 districts of the region in the grip of encephalitis. The state government launched Action Plan 2018 with a multi-pronged approach in collaboration with the WHO and Unicef to tackle the encephalitis menace.

    In 2018, deaths due to AES dropped to 166 from 511 in 2017. The number of encephalitis cases reported in 14 districts of eastern UP also dropped from 2,247 in 2,017 to 1,047 cases last year. In 2019 so far, 20 deaths have been recorded from 82 cases, according to UP government data.

    “The government worked on a plan and the results are for everyone to see,” says K K Gupta, director general of medical education and training in UP government. He said several measures included intensive vaccination and sanitation campaigns, improvements in health infrastructure and health resources (addition in beds and creation of more positions of nurses and paramedics apart from doctors.

    Public health experts working in the region say Uttar Pradesh laid a lot of emphasis on early diagnosis and providing immediate care. In 2017, the UP government started a campaign against the disease involving multiple stakeholders. As a result, the outbreak of disease itself has decreased considerably in the last two years.


    (Catch all the Business News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on The Economic Times.)

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    4 Comments on this Story

    Mahesh 411 days ago
    great job. let''s map and use best practices in bihar immediately
    Ramachandran Krishnamurthy411 days ago
    Well done
    Aditya Sinha412 days ago
    I must appreciate UP Government for acting on time. Over the years UP has slowly started to move forward unlike Bihar which is stuck in same dirt
    The Economic Times