“While the Center is extending all support to the state of Bihar for the containment and management of the recent surge of Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) and Japanese Encephalitis (JE) cases, I shall be going to Muzaffarpur tomorrow to take stock and review the situation at the site with the State Government.” This was stated by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare on the eve of his visit to Bihar, here today. During his visit, the Union Health Minister will interact with the multi-disciplinary teams deployed there and address the state level review meeting. “I shall discuss the management measures being recommended by the high level expert team of the Centre, and support that can be extended through National Health Mission (NHM) for health systems strengthening, and other Ministries of the Central government including the Ministry of Women and Child Development as part of the immediate and long term measures”, he stated.
Dr Harsh Vardhan further stated that the Health Ministry is constantly monitoring the situation and supporting the State health authorities in managing the AES/JE cases. “The continued round-the-clock presence of the Central and State Teams in the affected areas and preventive actions taken by them have instilled confidence among the public. We will soon be able to contain the rise in AES/JE cases”, Dr Harsh Vardhan added.
Elaborating on the support being extended to the State of Bihar, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said, “A multi- disciplinary specialist high level team has been deployed by the Health Ministry. Experts drawn from NCDC/NVBDCP/ ICMR/AIIMS, Patna/ Child Health Division of the Health Ministry are part of this Central team and are supporting the State in containing the surge in cases of encephalopathy/ encephalitis”. The Union Health Minister has met Shri Mangal Pandey, Health Minister of Bihar on two occasions recently and discussed the reported rise in cases of AES from Muzaffarpur and JE from Gaya in Bihar, and public health measures for their containment.