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H1N1 Virus / Swine Flu – Discuss

Swine Influenza A (H1N1) in the recent has become a quite common disease, perhaps becoming more fatal since 2009 when the WHO (World Health Organisation) after getting an epitome of the disease called it as 'pandemic'. The sinister virus which comes from the pigs and spread from person to person through coughing, sneezing or sometime even inhaling the virus while breathing or by touching any contaminated place and then touching other body parts especially the mouth or eyes.

The symptoms are more or less like seasonal flu unlike anyone affected from swine flu feels bit more nauseous with children being the most vulnerable and contagious. Over six years from its outbreak the H1N1 has become more deadly and contagious in a higher magnitude, which became a major concern for the governments all over the world. More than 100 countries are affected from this deadly virus causing an astronomical 3 lakhs deaths since 2009.

India is among the top listed countries with about 32000 cases and 1900 deaths. Gujarat and Rajasthan have been the most affected states in India with over 13000 cases and about 800 deaths with toll rising. But the exact number is considered far more than the official records as government data indicate cannot rule it out. There are some reports from Massachusetts Institute of Technology which claim 3 types of mutations in the virus. And from the blood samples that India had deposited last year in the public database vindicated 2 out of 3 mutations in India, though the government is denying this over a period.

WHO (World Health Organisation) moreover has claimed that India has not shared some critical information of the virus with it, which is a major failure of India in curbing the effects of the deadly virus and to study the major evolution of it worldwide. Major drawback of India is its casual behaviour against the virus and lack of knowledge among the masses. In terms the WHO have also reported about the doctors and health care workers in India about not being properly vaccinated, which hampers the health of the normal people implicitly.

Since H1N1 and H3N1 have become a seasonal influenza it became mandatory to synchronize extensive integrated precautionary measures by the government and the society which includes the health care hospitals, schools, NGO's, etc and more importantly every common people. The knowledge about the disease is very important otherwise proper medication also will not be sufficient to curb it. An affected person should at no time be isolated, and at the same time a person who discovers himself being infected should stop going to any public place and take medication at the earliest.

The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has approved the N95 mask which has been proved to cease the disease from being transmitted or from getting contacted should be worn by every individual whenever one steps out from home. The two most anti-viral drug till date as reported are Tamiflu and Relenza also prescribed by the the FDA which reduces the effect of swine flu when taken within 48 hours after the onset of symptoms should be in abundant supply in all hospitals and health care units.

The government should also take up a special program of providing these anti-viral drugs and masks to the minorities at minimal cost or free. As they don't have enough money to buy it and they are the most vulnerable to this virus. With the spreading of awareness about this virus through education, there should be a zeal mentality of self awareness where one should abstain as much possible from crowded places and also having a healthy diet with lots of fruits. And for the backwards or minorities who doesn't have enough money to have a good healthy diet should intake turmeric a bit more with their regular food until government help arrives. As it has been approved medically turmeric being highly anti oxidant reduces the effect of swine flu.

Swine flu can be permanently obliterated from the society through a vigil and proper knowledge and the joint hand effort by the government and the people.

Tanumoy Mondal