Thursday, March 26, 2015

Swine Flu Across India


      This article written by Zahir Janmohamed from the Aljazeera America news outlet goes into detail about the rising number of swine flu cases in India. Also known as H1N1, swine flu is a virus that can also be found in the respiratory tracts of pigs, in humans it causes symptoms similar to that of the common household flu. These symptoms usually consist of fever, coughing, fatigue, headache and nasal congestion. In India this year alone there has been a report of more than 32,000 cases and more than 11,000 deaths. There is a current debate on whether or not this is a new strain of the virus. Some believe that it is a new strain while other officials believe that it is the same strain that swept across many nations in 2009. The article also mentions that there are possibly many more cases than are being reported. This is due to the fact or assumption of medical and government corruptions. The  medical corruption in this country consists of bribing doctors, skewing statistics, and not cracking down on malpractice. The article mentions corruption at the governmental level as well. Here political forces take over and health care officials are marginalized. Thus healthcare workers cannot freely speak out on matter due to political pressures.


     The death tolls alone should be enough to put fire under officials to make a changes. But this is not the case here in India, officials are apparently more concerned with their image and the image of the country. According to the article the World Health Organization (WHO) said in that there were 18,500 deaths in 2009 as a result of the first Swine Flu outbreak. But a study done in 2012 following the outbreak said that the numbers were 12 times that figure. So it is clear that corruption and changing or with holding the facts on the matter is something that has been commonly seen in India. In addition the huge population of people in India are not being properly educated on the matter. Does the WHO or CDC have any jurisdiction here? How far could they go in regulating the matter given the corruption?

Phylicia Smith
10:31 pm


No comments: