Teacher, infant die of swine flu; India toll 19 (Lead)

August 13th, 2009 - 4:44 pm ICT by IANS  

Pune/Bangalore, Aug 13 (IANS) A nine-month-old child died of the H1N1 virus in India’s epidemic epicentre Pune and a woman school teacher was Bangalore’s first swine flu victim, officials said Thursday, as India’s toll climbed to 19 amid hectic efforts to curb the spread of the contagious disease.
Nine-month-old Swabhiman Kamble died at the Sahyadri Munot Hospital in Pune late Wednesday, an official said.

An official at the Maharashtra swine flu control room told IANS that the infant had been hospitalised early this week with flu-like symptoms. In between, he had also been taken for a check-up to the Sassoon Hospital, which has been handling very serious cases of influenza A (H1N1) infection.

This was the 14th swine flu death in Maharashtra and 11th in Pune. Two people have died in Mumbai and one in Nashik.

Maharashtra’s neighbouring Karnataka state saw the first H1N1 death late Wednesday.

A 26-year-old school teacher identified as Rupa died at Bangalore’s St. Philomena Hospital. Her test results, received Thursday, confirmed she died of swine flu.

“Her throat and nasal swabs tests have confirmed that the patient was suffering from the H1N1 influenza virus,” hospital director Shankar Prasad told reporters Thursday.

She was admitted in the hospital Aug 7.

“The patient was admitted with breathing problems coupled with pneumonia. Her condition started deteriorating Tuesday and she died Wednesday afternoon. We got the confirmation that the woman was suffering from swine flu only Wednesday night,” added Prasad.

According to hospital sources, the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), where the test was done, confirmed that Rupa was suffering from H1N1 virus late Wednesday night.

Rupa worked as a teacher in the Sudarshan Vidya Mandir at Jayanagar here.

According to figures available with the health department, 522 tests have been conducted in Karnataka and 97 people have tested positive for the H1N1 virus.

With this, India’s swine flu death has reached 19. Apart from 14 deaths in Maharashtra, one death each has been reported from Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Chennai and Thiruvananthapuram.

A 75-year-old woman died Thursday in Pune’s Sassoon Hospital though it was not immediately clear if she was suffering from the viral disease.

Bharti Goyal died just before noon. She was on the ventilator in the intensive care unit (ICU), Joint Director (Health Services) P.S. Chavan told IANS.

Goyal had been shifted to Sassoon Hospital from the KEM Hospital Wednesday with breathlessness.

Chavan said her swine flu test report had not been received yet.

Since Reeda Sheikh, 14, died of swine flu in Pune Aug 3, authorities across the country have been on alert and efforts are on to contain the spread of the virus.

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