Eluru (Andhra Pradesh) - Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy instructed officials and ministers dealing with the mysterious illness which swept across pockets of Eluru and Dendaluru in West Godavari district to take the observations of some reputed institutes for further analysis on Monday.
The AP government has asked for experts from National Institute of Nutrition (NIN), Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT) and All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) to study the disease which local officials could not decipher.
On Monday, Reddy visited Eluru government hospital and interacted with almost all the patients admitted there for treatment.
Information and Public Relations Minister Perni Venkatramaiah said the CM asked patients as to how they got the illness, what kind of relief was provided to them.
"He asked the doctors what medicines they were using, took the details of the number of people shifted and why? He said that continuous monitoring should happen by the ward secretariats," said Venkatramaiah.
According to the minister, Reddy instructed that discharged patients should not be left alone, directing a month's follow up and monitoring by the health department.
He also advised that a fortified diet should be given to the affected people.
Venkatramaiah claimed that the mysterious illness cases emanated from outside Eluru municipality as well, where the source of water supply is different from the town's as some people are pointing a finger at the quality of water for this scourge.
According to the minister, Reddy instructed the health minister and senior officials to stay put in Eluru to monitor the situation on an hourly basis.
Following his visit to the hospital, the chief minister held a review meeting with officials at the Zilla Parishad office in Eluru.
Reddy quizzed officials about the possible causes for the outbreak and about the medical examinations done on patients.
He directed them to create awareness among people to call 104 and 108 helplines in the event of any problem and asked for medical assistance to be provided as early as possible.
Officials informed the chief minister that drinking water and blood samples of patients were found to be normal.
"Blood samples taken for Hb, CBP, LFT, RFT and GRBS were normal and blood samples were inoculated, reports awaited. Viral markers for IgM ELISA, chikungunya, dengue, HSV-2 and all samples reported negative. The CT scan reports were also normal," the officials said.
According to them, cases were reported from Eluru rural, urban and Dendaluru in all age groups, including people who drank treated or mineral water.
Many villages in West Godavari district lack filtered drinking water due to the apathy of successive governments and officials from the panchayat level to the senior most bureaucrats.
For instance, Kalla, a village near Bhimavaram in West Godavari district has been deprived of filtered drinking water for more than three decades already.
More than 30 years ago, a small water tank was built for this village, which never saw any expansion, resulting in the tank rarely filtering the water it supplies to an ever increasing population.
"A village like Kalla needs two large water tanks but successive governments and panchayat officials never cared to come to the aid of the villagers, resulting in people suffering from muddy water being supplied through the village taps," said a Kalla resident. (IANS)