MUMBAI: The H1N1 virus struck twice in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region, claiming the lives of a nurse from Navi Mumbai and a 19-year-old Chembur boy within a few hours on Wednesday. This is the first time since a pandemic broke out in 2009 that a healthcare worker fell to it.
Suman Kamble (44), an auxiliary nurse and midwife, was posted at a dispensary of the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) in Nerul. Chief health officer of NMMC Dr Ramesh Nikam said, "It is very unfortunate that this is the second death due to H1N1 in Navi Mumbai this year, and the fact that she was one of our staffers makes it worse." He added that Kamble was diagnosed as H1N1 positive on July 28 and since then, she had been on antiviral treatment. She died on Wednesday afternoon.
Vinay Talewar (19) was suffering from pneumonia and he also tested positive for H1N1; doctors at Kasturba Hospital in Chinchpokli suspect that his condition remained undiagnosed and untreated for at least 10 days. Malnourished, he weighed 35 kg, grossly underweight for his age. BMC officials also confirmed that he had a history of epilepsy.
Families of both the victims have already been screened. Nikam said Kamble was survived by her bank employee husband and a son. "Both have been given the antiviral as a preventive measure. A carpenter who had recently worked at their house has also been given the medicine," he said.