Rapid spread of H1N1 virus claims 226 lives in India

NEW DELHI (XINHUA) - The H1N1 virus has claimed 226 lives in India so far this year, and more than 6,700 people have been infected with the disease and are undergoing treatment, official sources said.

The situation is quite alarming compared to last year, with 798 cases and 68 deaths reported during the corresponding period of 2018.

The majority of the deaths and infected cases have been reported from the states of Rajasthan and Haryana, as well as the capital, Delhi, official sources added.

While 2,363 cases and 85 deaths were reported from Rajasthan, Delhi reported 1,011 cases, and around 43 deaths. Nine hundred cases were reported from Haryana.

The sharpest spike in the number of new cases came in the week ending last Sunday, with 2,101 new cases. Rajasthan state alone confirmed 507 cases and 49 deaths in the particular week, followed by Delhi with 456 cases.

All the states have been advised to take measures to manage the seasonal influenza by the central government. The government of India is also supplying materials like drugs and face masks.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has recommended that healthcare workers and other priority groups be vaccinated against the virus.

The guidelines for influenza vaccination have been shared with all the states, it added.