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Indian doctors advice people to be cautious after undiagnosed respiratory disease outbreak in China

"I would just advise people to be careful. Follow regular hygiene practices and if you think there's someone who has this respiratory illness or infection, because a lot of these cases are viral," Dr Shukla said. If you are infected and others may become infected, then try to maintain distance from others.

By Ruchi Upadhyay 
Updated Date

New Delhi: Amid the reported outbreak of H9N2 cases and clusters of respiratory illness in children in northern China triggers fresh health concerns, Dr. Ajay Shukla, Director of Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, has advised people to be cautious and take care of cleanliness. He said that if anyone has respiratory disease or infection, one should be careful and try to maintain distance from other people. However, no such case has come to light in India yet. Therefore there is no need to panic.

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“I would just advise people to be careful. Follow regular hygiene practices and if you think there’s someone who has this respiratory illness or infection, because a lot of these cases are viral,” Dr Shukla said. If you are infected and others may become infected, then try to maintain distance from others.

This advice has been administered by a Delhi doctor when the outbreak of undiagnosed pneumonia in China is taking a heavy toll on children. Media reports are giving information about crowding in children’s hospitals at many places. He said, “Because if you are going out, we are also facing pollution, in such a situation it would be better that you should use N95 and N99 masks. Also wash your hands from time to time and stay safe, Maintain healthy behavior.”

Talking about the precautions to be taken in children, Dr. Shukla said, “If children are going to school, then take special care that they do not have cough, cold, fever or any other symptoms… “Talk and ask if any child in their class is suffering from this disease. Is sick… and if it happens, inform the school teacher about it and do not send your child to school if he is sick.”

Dr. Shukla said that the increase in the number of small children going to hospitals with respiratory diseases has worsened the situation in China. He said, “It is very early, I would say that the amount of information we are able to access is very less.

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WHO is certainly very concerned about this. And, he is trying to contact officials in China to get as much information as possible. But the picture that is emerging so far is that there has been a huge increase in the number of young children going to hospitals with respiratory illnesses, and in some centers they have reported an increase of almost 1200 children.

Many schools have asked children not to come to their classes inside the school. So the situation is definitely becoming troublesome.

Dr. Shukla said that due to Covid and the strict lockdown, the immunity of the general population and children has been affected, resulting in the cases increasing again. Dr Shukla said, “Based on the limited information available, some experts have reported an increase in infection in children.

According to an expert, the very strict lockdowns we have seen in China due to Covid have led to reduced immunity in children. “This has greatly affected the general population and the children there and this surge in cases is being seen due to low immunity.”

Dr. Shukla told people not to panic and based on the limited information available about this new influenza, an epidemic-like situation will not arise. The director of RML Hospital said that usually the number of influenza cases increases every year before winter and this does not indicate an unusual increase in cases.

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WHO raises an global alert
WHO has issued a global alert due to the increase in respiratory diseases and pneumonia in China, which affects only children. China’s National Health Commission reported a rise in respiratory diseases in the country, attributing it to the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions and the spread of known pathogens. The WHO has requested detailed information from China about this surge in respiratory diseases, especially childhood pneumonia, which has overwhelmed hospitals and threatens to suspend classes.

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