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“Swine flu vaccine in four months”

Ananya Dutta

KOLKATA: An indigenous vaccine for swine flu should be available in four months, Dinesh Trivedi, Minister of State for Health, said here on Friday, even as the number of confirmed cases in the city rose to 28.

“The development of the vaccine in our country is at an advanced state,” Mr. Trivedi said, adding that the vaccine will be available in the market, after clinical trials are conducted, in four months. “If a vaccine is developed overseas earlier, the Centre will import it,” he added.

The city’s count of A(H1N1) positive cases rose to 28, of which eight new cases were detected on Friday, said Dr. Taposh Sen, nodal officer of the State Health department’s swine flu wing.

Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee convened an emergency meeting to review the situation.

State Chief Secretary Ashok Mohan Chakraborty and Health Secretary Samar Ghosh were present.

The possibility of including private hospitals into the surveillance system was discussed. Officials said another meeting will be held on August 18.

With the increasing number of infected patients being admitted to the Infectious Diseases (ID) Hospital at Beliaghata, the Health Department opened an isolation facility at the M.R. Bhangur Hospital on Friday, Dr. Sen said. This is in addition to the isolation ward at the ID Hospital and the three swine flu clinics across the city.

Two patients were admitted to the M.R. Bhangur Hospital, while 10 confirmed cases were admitted to the ID Hospital, Dr. Sen said.

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