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DHS visits BC Roy hospital as six more babies die in city

Unconfirmed sources claimed 119 babies have died so far of either adenovirus or pneumonia showing symptoms of fever, cough and lung infections with breathing distress since January.

Statesman News Service | Kolkata |

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Adenovirus and pneumonia infections ravaging Bengal claimed lives of six more babies, claimed sources quoting unofficial figures.

The deaths happened at three separate hospitals, Dr BC Roy Institute of Paediatric Science, RG Kar Medical College Hospital and Medical College Hospital (MCH), in the last 24 hours.

Unconfirmed sources claimed 119 babies have died so far of either adenovirus or pneumonia showing symptoms of fever, cough and lung infections with breathing distress since January.

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee had claimed the death figure for children admitted to hospitals with adenovirus-related symptoms to be 19, out of which six are confirmed cases of adenovirus.

According to her, the remaining 13 mishaps were aided by comorbidities.

Two babies died at the MCH, who were referred by state-run Uluberia Medical College Hospital and Imambara State General Hospital in Howrah and Hooghly districts respectively during the end of February.

According to sources at MCH, the two babies of six month-old each, tested adenovirus positive and were undergoing treatment in the paediatric intensive care unit (PICU) under life-support system.

The third victim was a 10- month-old, brought to the Institute of Paediatric Science, popularly known as BC Roy Memorial Hospital for Children at Beliaghata from the state government hospital in Bongaon a couple of days ago. He was suffering from fever, cough and breathing trouble with several comorbidities. He died at the children’s hospital on Wednesday.

Three babies have died at RG Kar Medical College since 5 February. Sources at the teaching hospital said that two infants succumbed to pneumonia-like symptoms on Sunday while the other, a fivemonth-old of Bagda in North 24-Parganas, died on Tuesday.

Dr Siddhartha Niyogi, director of health services (DHS), visited BC Roy children’s hospital on Wednesday and took stock of the situation at the PICU and NICU facilities there.

A two-member team of West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Rights headed by its chairperson Sudeshna Roy visited the hospital on Wednesday and inspected different wards at the hospital.

“The government has taken adequate measures increasing infrastructure facilities like arrangements of 5,000 beds in 121 state-run hospitals for treatment of ARI-affected babies,” the CM had said, urging use of masks so that babies can’t contact infections from their parents and others.

A regular spurt in the number of baby deaths has been reported across the state since January though a section of experts in paediatric medicine and public health in the city hope with rise in temperature the virus will be less virulent gradually.   

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