15 die in India in latest meningitis outbreak

An outbreak of bacterial meningitis in India has caused one more death bringing the total number of lives lost to 15.

A health official in the Indian capital says that 120 people were being treated for the disease in hospitals in New Delhi, and maximum efforts were being made to prevent the spread of the disease.

A massive campaign has been mounted with health workers carrying out a house-to-house program to inform people about its symptoms and prevention.

They are combing through the narrow alleys and streets of the capital’s congested older neighbourhoods distributing pamphlets and pasting posters about the disease.

Sheila Dikshit, one of the capital’s top officials, says the disease is confined to pockets in some of the older neighbourhoods, and they are concentrating on those areas.

Meningitis is an inflammation of the lining around the brain and spinal cord that causes fever, headaches and a stiff neck. In severe cases, it can cause brain damage and death, if treated in the early stages but can be cured with antibiotics.

Federal Health federal Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss told Parliament today that adequate doses of antibiotic vaccines have been made available in the hospitals and at this stage there was no cause for alarm.

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