Lucknow: As the toll in deaths due to heat goes up to 54 in Uttar Pradesh’s Ballia district, deputy Chief Minister Brajesh Pathak, who also holds the health portfolio, said on Sunday that the government has sent two senior doctors to assess the ground situation there.
In a video statement, the minister said that the chief medical superintendent of Ballia had been removed for giving an ‘irresponsible statement’.
The chief medical superintendent of Ballia district hospital, Diwakar Singh had stated “Increased heat poses a problem for all. But in such weather conditions, the problem increases more for the people suffering from diseases like blood pressure, bronchial asthma, as these ailments aggravate.”
While 23 people died on June 15, 11 others died till the afternoon of June 16, a statement issued by the district health department had said.
Doctors have said that though there are different reasons for the deaths, severe heat could be a factor. Hospitalisations are rising because of severe heat, officials said. A severe heatwave has swept the state, with most places seeing temperatures north of 40 degrees.
The sudden increase in deaths and patients being admitted to hospitals with fever, breathing trouble, and other issues have overwhelmed the hospital, which has put its staff on alert.
Dr B.P. Tiwari, Additional Health Director, Azamgarh Circle, has said a team is coming from Lucknow to investigate if there’s some disease which is not being detected. When it is too hot or cold, respiratory patients, diabetes patients, and blood pressure patients are at increased risk. The mercury rising a little may have led to their deaths, Dr Tiwari speculated.
A massive rush is being reported at the district hospital and patients are unable to get stretchers and many attendants are carrying their patients to the emergency ward on their shoulders.
The Additional Health Director has, however, claimed that it gets difficult if ten patients turn up at the same time, but they do have stretchers.
The deputy chief minister, meanwhile, denied that there was any shortage of facilities in the government hospitals. (IANS)