First swine flu death: Disease detection was too late, says Azad

Last Updated: Mon, Aug 03, 2009 21:36 hrs

New Delhi: The life of the swine-flu affected teenaged girl in Pune could have been saved had she tested positive for the virus and taken Tamiflu, a drug against the disease, on time, the government said on Monday night.

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Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said the girl had first gone to a private hospital who treated her for "normal flu".

When she did not recover, she got herself admitted to another private hospital where again she was treated not for H1N1 but for pneumonia, he said.

"So, after having treated her for two days, the private hospital realized that there is some more than pneumonia. But by that time, both her lungs were involved," the minister said.

By the time, she was detected with the disease and given the medicine, "it was too late".

"I feel that had she got the test done right in the beginning, it would have come out positive and then should would have been administered Tamiflu and her life could have been saved," Azad told NDTV.

The girl's death of swine flu was the first in India since the country reported the first case of the disease a few months ago.

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