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India sees over 20-fold rise in swine flu cases 

Dehradun: According to a latest report on seasonal influenza (H1N1) released by the ministry of health and family welfare’s Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDPS), 8,543 people succumbed to deadly swine flu virus between 2010 and October 2017. More importantly, the number of cases across the country this year has seen a more than 20-fold rise from last year.

The report, ‘Seasonal influenza (H1N1) – State/UT-wise, year-wise number of cases and deaths from 2010 to 2017 (till 29th October)’ states a total of 1.14 lakh people were infected by H1N1 in the past seven years.

According to the data, the worst hit remained Maharashtra with maximum deaths (23,812 cases, 716 deaths) followed by Gujarat (18,206 cases, 431 deaths) and Rajasthan (13, 158 cases, 235 deaths).

The report shows that only Sikkim and Lakshadweep are the two areas that have remained untouched by H1N1 cases in the past seven years. In 2017, four states and a UT – Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Lakshwadeep – have not seen even a single case of H1N1 so far.

The over-all number of cases has witnessed a more than 20-fold rise this year as compared to the previous year.

While there were just 1786 cases across the country in 2016, this year the number has already reached 37,848 so far. In the past seven years, the highest incidences were noted in 2015 (42,592 cases, 2990 deaths).

According to officials, the new Michigan strain of H1N1 swine flu virus has also been identified in India this year, against which we do not have effective vaccines, The Times of India reported.

Even in Arunachal Pradesh which didn’t see a case in the past seven years, the mutated strain has been detected in patients. The state saw one death and five cases this year.

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