The mystery disease which has claimed 200 lives in Bihar and had been termed as ‘Acute Encephalitis Syndrome’ is actually just encephalitis said the Bihar government. Lab tests proved that the disease was encephalitis according to Additional Secretary of (Health) R P Ojha. Meanwhile, the toll mounted to 200 with 137 deaths reported from the SKMCH and Kejriwal charitable hospitals in Muzaffurpur, he said. Altogether 47 children died at the PMCH in Patna and 11 at the ANMCH, while five deaths were reported from different hospitals in Vaishali district, Ojha said.
Ten districts have been declared as encephalitis-affected districts and the doctors of these districts have been denied leaves in view of recent events. Earlier the Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh promised portable drinking water for people (encephalitis is mainly caused due to unhygienic living conditions and lack of clean drinking water) while the Bihar Government promised monetary compensation for the victims’ families.
Another state which has been affected by encephalitis is Uttar Pradesh.