H1N1 commonly known as Swine flu was declared a pandemic on June 11, 2009, by WHO and now Coronavirus has been declared a pandemic by WHO. 137 cases of Coronavirus have been detected so far in India, showing no chances of slowing down. Maharashtra is the most affected state and the new epicenter of India with 39 cases.
While the country focusing on Coronavirus, 1469 people have been found positive in the last two months due to Swine flu, according to the National Centre for Disease Control. Swine flu has taken over 28 lives till 1 march according to the Health Ministry.
Despite the epidemic “Coronavirus” outbreak in India, H1N1 commonly known as Swine flu has taken more lives but unable to make any headline.
78 cases were reported in Uttar Pradesh by the start of March, 9 policemen were died out of 19 positive cases. 6 supreme court judges were also found positive.
The swine flu cases had seen a large decrease in the year 2018, with more than half the number of cases as compared to 2017 and again doubled in 2019, said by Ashwini Kumar Choubey, minister of health and family welfare.
Several experts claim that there is no need to fear of H1N1, it is not as dangerous as Covid-19, numbers of death cases due to swine flu stood at 1,218, 2019 with a total of 28,798 cases according to NCDC data.
The symptoms are almost the same in H1N1 and COVID-19 include fever, sore throat, runny nose, and cough. Precautionary measures are also the same, wash hands frequently, don’t touch eyes, nose, mouth, wear a mask if respiratory illness, practice daily hygiene, these are the only possible ways to stay away from these deadly viruses.
The government claims that all the possible precautionary measures are being taken down to prevent the spreading of Coronavirus in India, the outbreak of swine flu in India has remained out of focus when it should be a priority.
It kills over 1000 people every year in India and this seasonal flu remains at peaks between January – March, and July – September. The WHO has recommended the composition of the influenza virus vaccine for use every year.
Dr. Satayanarayana Mysore, Head of the Department, Interventional Pulmonology and Sleep Medicine at the Manipal Hospitals Bengaluru said that “Coronavirus is far away. What we need to be dealing with is the cases of H1N1 and people must be made aware of the hand hygiene and those who are at vaccination.”
“The reason why it is recurring each year is that the virus is undergoing mutation every year and is trying to evade the human immune system that is why the vaccines are also reconstituted every year with completely different strains of the virus,” he added.