Jammu: There is an increasing need that public health responders should set up a rapid disease risk assessment to identify disaster impact and health needs at the flood ravaged areas of Jammu and Kashmir. Assessing the urgency and responding effectively to the humanitarian cries of health needs, New Delhi based BLK Super Speciality Hospital has sent a team of 15 specialists for 2 weeks for rescue operation in the flood affected areas of Jammu Division. The team looked after and treated over 1000 affected people in the areas of Ramgarh in Samba District, areas of Community Health Centre Marh and affected areas of Gole Gujral and Bhagatpur.
Dr R.N Saini, Senior Consultant, Internal Medicine, BLK Super Speciality Hospital said, “Natural disasters and infectious disease outbreaks represent global challenges. In disasters like this, it is important to provide education on hygiene and hand washing, making provision of an adequate quantity of safe water, sanitation facilities and appropriate shelter becomes very important for prevention of infectious diseases.”
The water level is receding and cases of people suffering with fever, gastro intestinal problems, loose motion, typhoid, viral fever and rashes among others are on the rise. With an effective and a very active team we have provided medical support to the people in the areas quite efficiently, added Dr Saini.
Naresh Kapoor, Director, BLK Super Speciality Hospital said, “The visiting team to Jammu & Kashmir comprised of an orthopaedic surgeon, internal medicine specialist, paediatrician, family physician, nurses and general duty assistants. The team from these specialities was constituted to effectively manage the post flood health hazards. On an average more than 60 patients were seen and treated every day by our physicians for two weeks. The team functioned efficiently in Jammu & Kashmir against all odds”.
“Most commonly occurring diseases in such situations are diarrhoeal diseases and leptospirosis. Diarrhoeal diseases cause over 40 per cent of the deaths in disaster and refugee camp settings. Epidemics among victims are commonly related to polluted water sources with faecal contamination or contamination of water during transportation and storage” informed Dr Saini.
Dr. R.N. Saini, Sr. Consultant BLK Super Speciality Hospital advises people to take preventive measures to keep diseases under check.
· Chlorination of drinking water which is the most important preventive measure during floods to reduce outbreak of water borne diseases
· Vaccination against Hepatitis A
· Use of insecticides
· Preventive measures such as indoor residual spraying / the retreatment or distribution of ITNs in areas where their use is well-known
· Proper handling of corpses