Dr. Duraikannan said that enlisting the services of the private practitioners also would provide the advantage of spreading the vigil wider. “General practitioners and all specialists such as gynaecologists, orthopaedicians, paediatricians, dentists and cardiologists can attend the meeting at 4 p.m. at the auditorium of the CMCH,” the health official said. All doctors were welcome to participate in the meeting. Sometimes, people might not show symptoms of the flu initially. The doctors should be trained to detect the symptoms in these cases and refer them for treatment at the designated centre.
The objective of this meeting was to impress upon the doctors the need to create a strong referral system, because this held the key to quick and effective treatment. The doctors would be asked to monitor patients who came to their hospitals or clinics for consultation on or treatment of other ailments. If there was a strong suspicion of the flu, the patients should be told to approach the CMCH immediately. The doctors would also be asked to educate their patients on flu prevention.
Basic precautions of keeping three feet away from people who coughed or had cold, and washing the hands well would be advocated. “The Collector, Dean of the CMCH V. Kumaran and I will speak to the doctors on all these aspects that are vital to early detection,” Dr. Duraikannan said. The doctors could seek clarification on the doubts they had. Joined by non-Governmental organisations, the health department would distribute among the public pamphlets on A (H1N1) flu symptoms and preventive measures.
“Nearly 1.5 lakh pamphlets will be distributed in Tirupur on Saturday and about 5,000 in Coimbatore city,” he said. The Coimbatore Medical College Hospital on Thursday took throat swabs of six persons – five men and a woman – and sent these for testing to the National Institute of Communicable Diseases in New Delhi. Among those who gave their samples on Thursday, one person had travelled to the city from the U.S., another from Singapore and another from Mumbai. A student had come from Bangalore. Official sources said that the test results of close to 40 persons were yet to come from the institute. The delay was attributed to the heavy load at the institute.