Mumbai: It's the return of swine flu with more than 350 people testing positive, and a 34-year-old in Nashik becoming the 25th casualty this season. Should we be worried? Maharashtra seems to be bearing the brunt of this outbreak of swine flu.
A 34-year-old in Nashik died in the local civil hospital shortly after being admitted, even as two more people were tested positive in the area. It takes the toll due to swine flu in the state to 11, with 24 deaths across the country, in the past week.
Six states " Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu " have reported more than 330 cases. Pune has been worst hit, registering 250 cases and 10 of the 11 casualties, in the past month. The Pune Municipal Hospital has earmarked 47 hospitals and clinics, where swine flu patients can be treated in isolation.
The National Institute of Virology has told CNN-IBN there was a 15-20 per cent increase in transmission of swine flu in March alone, saying the virus is now "endemic" to the country. It means the virus will be in circulation, like the regular flu virus till 60-70 per cent of the population develops immunity against it.
According to doctors, the outbreak is not as deadly as back in 2009.
Even though we're seeing an increase in H1N1 cases, for most people, it will remain a mild illness. However, there is no need to panic keeping into consideration that while swine flu claimed more than a thousand lives during the peak of the 2009 outbreak, regular flu kills 350-400 people every day in the country. The bottom line " don't ignore flu-like symptoms.