Health Ministry issues advisory to states amid ongoing heatwave

New Delhi: Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Sunday issued an advisory to the chief secretary of states amid the rising temperature and heatwave in parts of the country.

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He informed that the daily heat alerts which are being shared by India Meteorological Department (IMD) as well as National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) with States indicate forecast of heatwave for the next 3-4 days and may be disseminated promptly at the district/health facility level.

Bhushan has asked states to disseminate guidelines on the “National Action Plan on Heat-Related Illnesses” at the district level.

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“States should sensitise all health staff on early recognition and management of heat illness,” he wrote.

He asked to make sure the availability of sufficient drinking water at all health facilities and the continued functioning of cooling appliances in critical areas.

Health facilities should prepare and review the availability of I.V. fluids, ice packs, ORS and all necessary items, the health secretary said.

Bhushan underlined the need for the health facilities to increase resilience to extreme heat by arranging uninterrupted electricity for the constant functioning of cooling appliances and measures to reduce indoor heat.

However, the Indian Meteorological Department has predicted thunderstorms and dust storms from Monday hoping to bring some respite to the people from the heatwave.

Western disturbances are near Pakistan-Afghanistan and are moving towards Delhi and thunderstorms or dust storms are likely to be experienced in northwest India, senior scientist at IMD RK Jenamani told ANI.

“We are giving thunderstorms and dust storms warning for the whole of northwest India covering Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, and West Uttar Pradesh. Cloudy weather or dust rising winds will continue till May 5. From May 1 to 5, the temperature will be normal. No heatwave will be there,” he said.

However, the monsoon will commence by May 15 as per the latest predictions by the weather office.

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