Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal perform better than India in controlling hepatitis B

India introduced hepatitis B vaccine in the Universal Immunisation Programme in 2002 and scaled-up nationwide in 2011. But even eight years later, the prevalence among children less than five years of age has not reduced below 1%. In contrast, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal and Thailand have achieved this feat. On September 3 this year, Bangladesh, Bhutan, … Continue reading Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal perform better than India in controlling hepatitis B

Kashmir editorial: Hey IMA, Lancet has commented on other countries too

How could the Indian Medical Association with over 500,000 doctors, which is supposed to be reading the journal regularly, be blissfully unaware of what The Lancet has always stood for. It is not an act of commission by the journal, as the IMA calls it, but what The Lancet considers as its beholden duty to speak up … Continue reading Kashmir editorial: Hey IMA, Lancet has commented on other countries too

Alarming spread of H1N1 in 2019

As on February 24 this year, the number of H1N1 cases and deaths in India have been 14,803 and 448, respectively. The highest numbers are from Rajasthan (3,964), Delhi (2,738) and Gujarat (2,726). The number of cases reported till February 24 is nearly the same as that recorded in the whole of 2018 (14,992). And … Continue reading Alarming spread of H1N1 in 2019

HIV: Tamil Nadu case turns the spotlight on safe blood availability

A 23-year-old pregnant woman in Tamil Nadu tested positive for HIV after receiving a unit of blood at a government hospital blood bank, indicating glaring lapses in screening procedures. The blood was donated on November 30 and transfused to the pregnant woman on December 3. Testing all donated blood units for a number of transfusion-transmissible … Continue reading HIV: Tamil Nadu case turns the spotlight on safe blood availability

What the latest Zika outbreak in India means

A small study undertaken at JIPMER has found Zika virus antibodies in 14 of 90 patients with Guillain–Barré syndrome. This indicates that there might be a remote possibility of Zika virus silently circulating in some parts of India and could cause an epidemic at some future date. Is the latest Zika virus outbreak in Jaipur, which is the third … Continue reading What the latest Zika outbreak in India means

After 24 years, ISRO faces a small setback with the failed PSLV launch

The failed PSLV attempt to launch a navigation satellite is unlikely to affect future missions. After 39 consecutive successful launches, the Indian Space Research Organisation had almost made it appear that launching satellites was indeed child’s play when it used its workhorse rocket, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle. But the PSLV, which has been placing … Continue reading After 24 years, ISRO faces a small setback with the failed PSLV launch

Lessons India has not learnt on H1N1

The high H1N1 flu toll points to a failure of the government to put necessary systems and precautions in place. The number of influenza A (H1N1) virus cases and deaths reported from across India this year has already crossed 22,000 and 1,000, respectively. These are lower than the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme, NCDC 2015 figures … Continue reading Lessons India has not learnt on H1N1

H1N1 is back with a vengence

So far this year, 12,500 people have been infected with the influenza A (H1N1) virus in India, of which 600 have died. According to official data, Maharashtra alone has registered 284 deaths, which by itself is much more than the total mortality figure of 265 in the country as a result of H1N1 in 2016. … Continue reading H1N1 is back with a vengence

With GSLV Mark III launch, ISRO puts India in a new orbit

The Indian Space Research Organisation has crossed a significant milestone with the successful developmental flight of the country’s heaviest Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, the GSLV Mark-III. This is the first time a satellite weighing over 3.1 tonnes has been launched from India to reach the geostationary orbit about 36,000 km from Earth. With this, ISRO has … Continue reading With GSLV Mark III launch, ISRO puts India in a new orbit

Breaking the drug-resistant TB transmission cycle important

Nearly two months after the Health Ministry set a highly ambitious target of working towards elimination of tuberculosis by 2025, a study published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases indicates that India’s TB crisis is all set to snowball by 2040 when one in 10 cases could be drug-resistant. What is even more alarming is that the increased … Continue reading Breaking the drug-resistant TB transmission cycle important