Is media spreading hysteria over Swine Flu? A fact check

As per the latest released data, Swine flu (Influenza A H1N1) death toll in India reached 1,005 while the total number of cases reached 18,105 in 2015.

Note that not all the deaths are directly due to Swine flu. Some may be due to comorbid conditions (like lung disease, liver disease, kidney disease, diabetes etc.) and compromised immunity of the patients.

The Health Ministry sought the opinion of the health experts like Nata Menabde, WHO Representative to India and medicine experts from AIIMS, RML, Safdarjung hospitals, NCDC, and ICMR.

- Advertisement - - Article resumes -

They agree that the present strategy being followed by the Health Ministry in terms of the treatment protocol, vaccination policy, Schedule X status for Oseltamivir drug etc., is broadly in the right direction.

The full details of the Health Ministry’s strategy can be read here[pdf]:http://mohfw.gov.in/showfile.php?lid=3080

Also, the Ministry says there is sufficient quantity of medicine (Oseltamivir) available to treat Influenza A H1N1 cases and no new medication has been advised apart from the existing one.

india-swine-flu-2009-8-13-11-10-15High temperatures are a deterrent for the virus. So, we hope the spread of the virus will be halted soon.

What about media reports that Swine flu virus in India has turned even more dangerous ?

These scare-mongering media reports are supposedly based on an MIT research findings in the March 11 issue of Cell Host & Microbe

However, a reading of the research suggests no cause for panic.

According to the report, only two Influenza sequences have been deposited during 2014–2015 from India into international viral databases

The researchers examined these two sequences and found a set of mutations, which may be a potential cause for concern.

However, the report says that due to limited Indian-origin influenza sequences available in the public database, it is not possible to make any causal inference on the perceived increased fatalities in India.

They conclude that the potential threat of the current outbreak in India cannot be determined without full genome sequence information.

In an interview to MIT News, the authors state that, “The point we’re trying to make is that there is a real need for aggressive surveillance to ensure that the anxiety and hysteria are brought down and people are able to focus on what they really need to worry about.”

Instead, Indian media is doing the opposite.

The National Institute of Virology says that the strain mentioned in the report of 2014 has no relevance to the current outbreak of 2015. Recently NIV has analyzed six full genomes, which also suggests absence of such mutations. Subsequent report on this H1N1 virus by CDC/WHO as communicated to NIV also did not report any oseltamivir resistance.

– by @narenbalaji


Share This Post and Support:
We need your support to survive in the media industry. Please consider paying us for the content we produce:

To know more about these payments, please click here.


Most read articles recently

Nehru Gandhi family celebrates birthday in aeroplane

A Pulitzer Prize winning report on Priyanka Gandhi’s aeroplane trip by Mausambi Singh

Priyanka Gandhi took an IndiGo flight from Delhi to Lucknow, and it was a flight to remember.
When Manohar Parrikar found $3 billion of our money lying forgotten in a US account

When Manohar Parrikar found $3 billion of our money lying forgotten in a US account

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had revealed that he had found $3 billion (or Rs 20,000 crore) of Govt of India money lying forgotten in a US account.

Aaj Tak channel spots lone anti-BJP voice in a crowd in viral video, uses him in multiple shows to attack BJP

Aaj Tak picked an anti-BJP man from a viral video where he was arguing with dozens of people
Image Source: DNA

Karnataka: Police arrest techies for chanting Pro-Modi slogans at Rahul Gandhi event in Bengaluru

The police officers who were supposed to act to save the techies from being attacked by the Congress 'goons' not only remained silent but also unleashed its force against them for chanting pro-Modi slogans.

Anti-BJP accounts on social media, including Huffpost, Scroll journalist, celebrate death of Manohar Parrikar

As the sad news of passing away of Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar came in, social media was filled with condolence messages from people in every spectre of life, from politicians to celebrities to ordinary netizens, irrespective of their political affiliation. Manohar Parrikar was known for his simplicity and...

India Today uses the photo of a Hindu girl to highlight the high rate of child marriage among Muslims in Kerala

Recently a detergent brand was highly criticised by people for releasing a Hinduphobic advertisement targeting the festival of Holi.

131 chartered accountants debunk the politically motivated baseless allegations of some economists and social scientists

CAs appeal to the professionals around the world to come together to present the true picture of India and counter baseless allegations with political motivations
Christian Michel documents: Rafale delayed because of Eurofighter lobbying and Sweden's Bofors 'leverage' over Gandhis?

Christian Michel documents: Rafale delayed because of Eurofighter lobbying and Sweden’s Bofors ‘leverage’ over Gandhis?

These documents that point towards the Gandhi family are secret notes about Eurofighter lobbying faxed by Christian Michel to Guido Haschke. 

Bhim Army pours scorn on Priyanka Gandhi Vadra

Priyanka Gandhi apparently is proving a disaster as Congress general secretary in-charge for east Uttar Pradesh

More than 70 vessels including INS Vikramaditya, nuclear submarines, battleships were deployed near Pakistan after Pulwama Attack: Indian Navy

Carrier Battle Group led by INS Vikramaditya, nuclear submarines and other battleships of Indian Navy were at the North Arabian Sea after the Pulwama attack

Latest articles

Connect with us

147,181FansLike
118,802FollowersFollow
29,582SubscribersSubscribe

Don't miss these


Share This Post and Support: