Bihar prepares for rise in black fungal infections in post COVID-19 battle


Express News Service

PATNA: The state health department in Bihar is on alert after symptoms of black fungal infection has been noticed in more than 24 COVID-19 patients in the state in the past few days. 

The state’s Health Minister announced that a special ward will be set up on Monday in Patna AIIMS to house the patients being treated for black fungal infection. 

Experts say that those who are recovering from the coronavirus infection, and has a medical history of diabetes, blood pressure, and kidney ailments are more susceptible to catching mucormycosis, also known as black fungus. 

It is feared that there may be a spurt of the fungal infections among those recovering from COVID-19 in rural areas because of the growing cases in the interior parts of the state. 

Though unofficial sources put the number of patients showing symptoms of black fungus at 30, health minister Mangal Pandey put the figure at 24 in Bihar.

Meanwhile, multiple health experts projected that Bihar may see between 1,000 and 1,500 patients with black fungus by the end of May this year on the basis of rate of infection of Covid witnessed in rural areas.

On Saturday, four new patients showing symptoms of black fungus were admitted to Patna AIIMS taking the total number of people showing the symptoms of the infection in AIIMS to 20. 

Sources said that all these patients at AIIMS arrived from Patna, Neura, Ara, Buxar, Nawada, Muzaffarpur, Aurangabad and other districts.

Mangal Pandey told media that six thousand doses of ‘Liposomal Amphotericin-B’ injection, which is used in treating black fungus, have been supplied by the health department to various government and private hospitals, with the help of the World Health Organization. 

“In view of rising cases of black fungus infections, 2000 vials of injections have been sent to AIIMS at Patna, 300 to IGIMS, 300 to PMCH, 300 to NMCH, 300 to JLNMCH at Bhagalpur, 200 to SKMCH at Muzaffarpur, 200 to DMCH, in Darbhanga, 200 to medical College and Hospital at Madhepura, 200 to Gaya, 200 to Vardhman Medical College and Hospital at Pawapuri in Nalanda, 200 to Government Medical College and Hospital at Bettiah and 1600 to RMRI in Patna,” he said.

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