Jharkhand launches helpline for information on black fungus
State health minister Banna Gupta launched a 24x7 helpline dedicated to providing information on mucormycosis, or black fungus,amid reports of a growing number of cases as well as fatalities.
Gupta rolled out the helpline (6203709250) during a daylong webinar organised by the state health department and the women’s wing of the state chapter of Indian Medical Association (IMA), in association with National Health Mission, on black fungus and other emerging health concerns.
Speaking at the webinar, Gupta said, “The 24x7 helpline aims to function as a one-stop centre to assist people by disseminating information about black fungus, ways for early detection and other safety measures.”
He said the state government was working to put in place elaborate treatment facilities for those afflicted by the disease which was emerging as one of the most serious post-Covid complications being experienced by patients.
“In every district we are now setting up a dedicated ward for black fungus. The state government is also working towards organising compensation for victims of the disease. We are also readying a team of dedicated professionals for effective treatment,” he announced.
Data available from the health department suggests that among 63 cases so far, 18 people have died while 14 have recovered. All the cases have surfaced in the last one month since the detection of the first case at the end of April this year.
Gupta also appealed to all those who attended the webinar to make the ongoing Covid-19 vaccination drive a success in the state. “The government is working hard to increase vaccine coverage on a daily basis but we are still facing issues of hesitancy in rural areas. The vaccine is completely safe and everyone must take it,” he said.
Over two lakh people — enouragd by religious and community leaders from across the state—attended the webinar, as per an official statement released by Gupta’s office. Additional chief secretary Arun Kumar Singh, in his address, highlighted the government’s efforts at tackling the third wave.