JE claims first victim; schools asked to close for seven days

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E-front-__-one-death-by-JE-at-CCpur-copyCCpur, Jul 27: In the wake of the outbreak of Japanese Encephalitis (JE) in the district coupled with the overwhelming cases of viral fever, the district administration has asked all educational institutions in the district to close down for 7 days with effect from tomorrow even as the viral disease claimed its first victim today.
Donglianpau, 42 a resident of Bungmual and the Headmaster of Vimala Raina HS expired early today at RIMS, Imphal after suffering a bout of fever and other symptoms identified with JE since Thursday last. Medical officials from the district who held their third meeting since a Rapid Action Committee was formed to address the outbreak noted today that his case was clinically considered as JE but the laboratory result is being awaited.
He was reportedly referred to Imphal by a doctor here on Thursday after suspecting that he was suffering from JE.
As he was treated at RIMS and not JNIMS it took time to obtain the results said the officials who maintained that they were confident it would be a case of JE once the test results conducted at RIMS are obtained.
The demise of the Headmaster who is noted as a game changer for the school he served and is credited for doubling the number of students within a year by winning the trust of parents and highly decorated for his commitment, Donglianpau was taken to the school campus one last time today with his own students and their parents carrying his coffin to pay their last tribute.
He was awarded with the Siamsinpawlpi Honours Award for his distinguished service in the field of education and was a nominee of the district for the State Best Teachers Award.
The district has so far recorded three cases of JE including the Headmaster who expired today with the two others still undergoing treatment at Imphal. There are two other suspected cases recorded by the health officials but one has expired before he could be referred for further treatment while the other, a woman is under treatment.
Recent cases of medical emergencies, from the Dengue epidemic and now the JE epidemic has once again highlighted the need for a fully functional laboratory in the district to deal with cases that can at least be tested locally.
Meanwhile, the overwhelming cases of viral fever that has grip the district for the past several weeks is yet to show any sign of subsiding as of today.
According to an official data provided by the health authorities, an exclusive Fever Clinic set-up at the district hospital has in the last three days attended to 1219 cases while 7500 people have been administered the JE vaccine.
The district administration has today issued a memo requesting all heads of educational institutions in the district to close down their respective institutions for 7 days beginning tomorrow (28th July) to check the spread of both the viral fever and JE.
A statement issued by Lunminthang, DC Churachandpur said necessary steps have been taken up by the district administration in co-ordination with the CMO Churachandpur for procurement of vaccine and requested citizens to report any suspected mosquito breeding places to the notice of the authorities.
Overwhelmed with cases of viral fever and the subsequent confirmation of JE cases, demand for JE vaccination has witnessed a rapid surge since Saturday last with people in hundreds queuing up for the vaccine at the immunisation centre or at the vaccination camps conducted by the Health Department.
In many instances the vaccine, which officials said was imported and expensive, gets over before the queue wounds up due to the paucity of vaccine stocks. The trend is likely to continue as information about the JE related death today has reached people far and wide.
While the vaccination exercise is ordered to focus on children below 15 years, the JE cases confirmed and suspected so far entirely involve adults leaving health officials in a slippery situation on administering the vaccine.
The District Rapid Action Committee, comprising of 8 (eight) members headed by the Chief Medical Office has also decided to meet every alternate day until the situation improves.

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