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A team of medical and health experts rushed to Andhra Pradesh’s Eluru town after 227 people were hospitalised over the weekend with symptoms resembling epilepsy. Deputy Chief Minister and Health Minister Alla Krishna Srinivas has said that the situation is under control and medical help is being provided to all the needy.
Most recent figures indicate 455 cases of the mysterious illness, of which 263 have been discharged.
“The government is taking all necessary steps. There is no need for any panic,” the Health Minister said.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy visited Eluru government hospital and interacted with almost all the patients admitted there for treatment. Following his visit to the hospital, Reddy is expected to attend a meeting with officials to discuss the development.
Special focus is on the areas which reported cases and medical camps have been set up to provide treatment to the patients. Door to door survey is being conducted to monitor the health condition of the people.
Water samples have been sent for testing to the laboratory and no water pollution has been reported. Blood samples of the patients have been sent to lab and no viral infections are detected.
All the patients were tested for Covid-19 and all reports were negative.
After ruling out contamination of water and milk for the mysterious illness, officials are now collecting vegetables samples from 20 affected places for testing.
The minister said more details will be known after test results come and there is no need to panic.
According to Himanshu Shukla, West Godavari Joint District Collector, they are getting support from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, National Institute of Nutrition, National Institute of Virology, National Centre for Disease Control, and Indian Council for Medical Research.
People affected by the mysterious illness complained of 3 to 5 minutes of epileptic fits without repetition, forgetfulness, anxiety, vomiting, headache, and back pain.
Medical and health experts were trying to ascertain the cause of sickness. Most of the affected people were elderly and children.
Authorities were baffled as the affected people were neither related nor they had attended a common event. According to officials, the cases were reported from different areas in Eluru town of West Godavari district.
Health authorities have also been asked to ensure availability of emergency medicines to deal with any situation.
Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh Governor Biswa Bhusan Harichandan has enquired with local administration on the condition of those admitted to the hospitals and directed officials of the Medical and Health Department to take immediate measures, and provide necessary medical care and treatment to the affected persons on an expeditious basis.
Stating that more cases were still being reported, Telugu Desam Party (TDP) General Secretary Nara Lokesh has demanded the government declare a health emergency in Eluru town and initiate all the necessary steps to mitigate the illness.