Encephalitis Deaths in Bihar: 3 more children die, toll reaches 141

Muzaffarpur: The death toll from acute encephalitis syndrome reached 141 in Bihar with the viral disease claiming the lives of three more children in Muzaffarpur.

As many as 18 districts were affected by encephalitis. Majority of the cases had been reported from Muzaffarpur (437), where 85 children have died so far.

A central team headed by Manoj Jalani, additional secretary of the ministry of health and family welfare, visited Muzaffarpur on Friday and suggested that test equipment should be made available in the four paediatric intensive care units of the Sri Krishna Medical College Hospital.

“Based on the suggestion of the Central team, we made available portable X-ray machine, portable ultrasonography and electrolyte testers in the PICU of the SKMCH. These equipment were available in the hospital, but the central team suggested that children undergoing treatment in PICU should not be taken out for these tests”, said Sanjay Kumar, Bihars principal secretary, health.

A team of experts from the Indian Council of Medical Research has reached SKMCH to make the virology laboratory operational at the earliest.

The death of children in Muzaffarpur due to encephalitis figured in the Rajya Sabha on Friday, with opposition parties demanding that the government make an urgent intervention and pay compensation to families.