A day after the state government notified mucormycosis (black fungus) under the Epidemic Diseases Act, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh today directed the Health Department to ensure that necessary medicines to treat the infection are made available at all government hospitals, including those in rural areas.
He also asked the department to depute doctors at the Primary Health Centres in villages to ensure early detection and treatment of black fungus in the rural areas.Stressing that early detection of the disease could prevent it from being fatal, the CM asked the Covid expert team headed by Dr KK Talwar to ensure that doctors in the L3 facilities of all government hospitals were directed on proper treatment of Covid patients to check irrational use of steroids, which had been identified as the main cause of this disease.
Excessive use of steroids in Covid treatment was causing problems, Dr Talwar told the Covid review meeting chaired by the CM. He said the doctors were being guided to use substitutes and the expert group was trying to finalise a line of treatment with substitutes and alternatives.
The CM also asked Dr Talwar and his team to analyse why patients were returning to hospitals even after recovering from Covid. In the first phase, the state did not report any black fungus case, even though many were reported from several other states. The Chief Minister, however, made it clear that this should not be taken as a precedence and the situation could change any moment, which necessitated strict preventive measures.
He said this was the reason his government had yesterday notified the disease under the Epidemic Act, even though no such guidelines had been issued by the Centre then.