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Indian father pleads to see sick 4-yr-old

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    Posted: February 19 2006 at 2:43pm
Can I see my son please?

Pleads father of quarantined 4-year-old in Nawapur


At Nawapur’s Civil Hospital, just about everybody wants to meet Ramesh
Gosave, a farmer from Anjum Pada village. But Gosave wants nothing
more than to meet his four-year-old son Prakash, who is in the isolation
ward. Doctors have prescribed tests for Prakash in the wake of the bird
flu scare.

Doctors have told Gosave that till they get his son’s medical and blood
report, the father and son cannot meet.

“Just allow me to meet him once. He’s my son. I know nothing has
happened to him. He is fine,” cries Gosave to anybody who comes within
hearing distance. The doctors say that as much as they would like to help
Gosave, controlling the flu is far more important .

According to Gosave, Prakash was running a temperature and was
coughing over the past four days. When his relatives took him to the
Nawapur Civil Hospital, the doctors suspected the worst and sent him to
the isolation ward.

In the hospital teeming with media and curious visitors, this is not the
only family drama playing itself out. In the same isolation ward lies
Shakuntala Gavit, 35. Gavit, a farm hand and constant companion for
poultry chicken is also suspected of carrying the flu.

Gavit had gone to the hospital because her son was feeling feverish for
the last week. When the doctors realised that as part of her work she kept
close proximity to poultry, they asked her to undergo a check-up as well.
While her son was given the all-clear, Gavit was sent to the isolation ward
and her blood samples for testing.

“I don’t know what has befallen this village. It was doing nicely in the
poultry business. No one ever thought God would punish us through the
very thing from which we earned our daily bread,” sobbed Munaji Gavit,
Shakuntala’s husband.

However, doctors said it was heartening to note that relatives were not
shunning family members of the affected persons but helping them and
there was no panic yet.

“Most poultry farmers are not cooperating because they believe they will
not be adequately compensated for the loss of poultry.

“And though the government has said it will pay Rs 40 for every chicken
killed, the farmers want more. It would be a huge problem if these people
sell some of the stock before we arrive,” said a senior health official on
condition of anonymity. Giving rise to these fears is the fact that for the
past few days, the prices of chicken have been falling — a sign that
distress sales were being conducted by farmers who probably knew
something was amiss on their farms.

http://www.mumbaimirror.com/nmirror/mmpaper.asp?
sectid=2&articleid=21920062395531219200623730390


sectid=2&articleid=2192006231616562192006231538265">
http://www.mumbaimirror.com/nmirror/mmpaper.asp?
sectid=2&articleid=2192006231616562192006231538265
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Experts, industry cry fowl over Govt flip-flop

Mumbai , Feb. 19

AFTER a few hours of brisk business on Sunday morning, Abdul sits close
to an iron cage crammed with chicken in a licensed market in South
Mumbai. His hands and clothes still stained with signs of the morning
sale, Abdul does not believe that bird flu has affected poultry in parts of
Maharashtra.

In the trade for over 20 years, he recalls 2003 when bird flu panic drove
down chicken prices. It is a conspiracy to malign the poultry industry, he
says. A black slate board hangs over his head with Rs 54 chalked on it,
indicating the day's price on broiler chicken.

Abdul's disbelief may stem from concerns over his livelihood. But his
observation finds an echo in substantiated arguments by members of the
scientific community and the poultry industry.

Why were they so secretive, asks a veterinary scientist. Bird deaths in
large numbers had been reported over the last 10 days, but the
Government insisted it was due to Ranikhet disease, which affects the
nervous system and causes death in older birds.

What has changed since? How has it suddenly become bird flu? And if
there was a suspicion even then, as media reports quote Maharashtra's
Minister of State for Animal Husbandry, Mr Hassan Mushrif, why did they
not seal the area immediately, he asks.

If birds were infected earlier in February (when 15,000 birds were
apparently found dead), then diseased birds have already been
transported to other parts of the State and country, as the region was not
sealed. Culling birds now does not rule out the spread of the disease.
And why Nandurbar district? It does not see too much migratory activity,
asks an ornithologist. The Government needs to be more transparent on
the issue, he adds.

"We are confident it is not bird flu," Ms Anuradha Desai, Chairperson of
National Egg Co-ordination Committee, told Business Line.
Companies with the vested interest of selling their drug or vaccine have
stirred this up, she added.

The Poultry Diagnostic Research Centre (PDRC) and Government
laboratories such as the Regional Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (RDDL)
have said that the birds were affected by Ranikhet disease.
"We are shocked. What has changed overnight?" she said, adding that the
issue is being raised with the Prime Minister's Office.

"We have asked for re-examination of the samples and to stop the
culling. If the birds are killed, we will never be able to find out."
The PDRC has screened more than 3,000 samples from across the
country and not found anything wrong. And the first signs of this are
beginning to show at other poultry markets in Mumbai, where prices have
slid to Rs 40 a kg and the crowds have started to dwindle.

http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/2006/02/20/stories/
2006022002010100.htm]http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/
2006/02/20/stories/2006022002010100.htm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 19 2006 at 3:05pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 19 2006 at 3:55pm

Yikes - The above article has some frightening statements:

"We'll have a meeting Monday and decide what to do."  H5 is news to the medical staff?

"From what we understand there is no need to ear-mark any hospital wards". Hello, this is a highly contageous disease. Patients should be isolated and staff should use 'isolation technique' and bodily fluid precautions.

"They've received no instructions from the Government on how to handle Bird Flu".  Since when is New Delhi, India a back-woods wide-spot-in-the-road?

Arrrrgrrrhhh !?!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 19 2006 at 7:03pm


I think the captain is re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

Lets make sure we're not aboard, me bucko!
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