JE, Jaundice & Diphtheria Outbreak in 3 Odisha Districts

Health Minister Directs Enhanced Fever Surveillance, Emphasises Potable Water Supply

Bhubaneswar: Diphtheria is spreading its tentacles across various villages in Angul and Rayagada, while Jaundice is afflicting Sambalpur. The alarming situation in these three districts is being closely monitored by the newly appointed Health Minister, Dr. Mukesh Mahaling.

During a video conference with the District Collectors of Angul, Rayagada, and Sambalpur on Monday, the Health Minister directed the implementation of all necessary measures to combat diphtheria and jaundice.

The minister mentioned that two children in Angul are under suspicion of being infected with Japanese Encephalitis (JE). The results of their tests are pending, and fortunately, no new infections have been reported.

In the past ten days, diphtheria cases have emerged in four villages across Rayagada, Koraput, and Kalahandi, but no new cases have surfaced recently. All affected patients are in isolation, and both the district administration and medical teams are actively responding to the situation.

The minister highlighted that infections like these can occur when a child’s immunity is compromised. However, since diphtheria can result from malnutrition, preventive measures and adequate vaccination are underway.

Addressing the jaundice outbreak in Sambalpur, the minister stated that WATCO has been tasked with replacing the pipeline within seven days to resolve the drinking water issues in Kumarpada and Kalibadi. Additionally, the Sambalpur Municipal Corporation has been instructed to ensure the supply of potable water supply to all households.

Furthermore, Sambalpur administration has been directed to issue a new Detailed Project Report (DPR). The Health Minister expressed his readiness to visit Sambalpur for a review if necessary and has ordered the administration to remain alert and maintain close communication with the Distict Collector.

Dr Nilakantha Mishra, Director of Public Health, informed that the district administrations have been briefed on the logistics of deploying the vaccination team to the diphtheria-affected areas.

He also said that there have been 82 reported cases of jaundice in Sambalpur, with 39 individuals diagnosed with hepatitis A. “The status of the two suspected JE cases in Angul remains pending. New cases of measles have been reported in Narayanapatna of Koraput instead of rumoured “unknown disease”, he said.

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