Lumbini reports rise in viral fever casesDoctors advise viral infection patients to undergo PCR tests to rule out Covid-19 since both illnesses have similar symptoms.
Daya Laxmi Sharma of Omsatiya Rural Municipality-2 in Rupandehi district had been suffering from fever since Friday evening. She had worked in the field all day and thought exhaustion might have given her a fever.
But her fever got worse through the night and she was taken to a Bhairahawa-based hospital the next morning.
Doctors at the hospital said she was suffering from a viral infection.
“A blood test at the hospital confirmed viral infection. We brought her home the same day,” said Pratik Sharma, the son. “But her health worsened in the evening so we took her back to the hospital.”
Two other family members, according to Pratik, are also suffering from viral fever.
Hospitals in Lumbini Province have been reporting an increase in the number of patients suffering from viral fever in the last week.
Prithvi Pandey of Butwal-12 has been suffering from a common cold and fever for the past four days. He bought medicines for the same from a local pharmacy since he deems hospitals unsafe from coronavirus infection.
“I am taking medicines for fever and cold. I will visit a hospital if I don’t feel better in the next few days,” he said. “My mother and sister-in-law were also suffering from similar illness a few days ago but they got better with medicines from the pharmacy.”
According to Dr Sudarshan Thapa, a consultant physician at the Lumbini Provincial Hospital, around 50 patients suffering from viral fever have been visiting the hospital on a daily basis for the past few days.
“There is a steady rise in the number of coronavirus patients too. Now the hospital is also getting overwhelmed with patients of viral fever,” Thapa told the Post.
Given the ongoing situation, Thapa advises patients of viral infection to undergo a Polymerase Chain Reaction Test to rule out coronavirus infection since both illnesses have similar symptoms.
“People suffering from fever should also visit hospitals rather than self-medicating,” he said.
Bhairahawa-based Bhim Hospital has also seen an increase in the number of patients suffering from a viral infection, according to Dr Siddhartha Pandey, the information officer at the hospital.
“The number of viral fever patients visiting the hospital is increasing by the day. Some health workers at the hospital are also suffering from viral fever. They, too, are admitted at the hospital and are receiving treatment,” said Pandey.
In Kapilvastu, more than 60 patients suffering from viral fever have been visiting the District Hospital in Taulihawa every day.
According to Dr Ganesh Chhetri, the medical officer at the hospital, most viral fever patients are aged between 15 and 30 years.
“The number of viral fever patients has increased in the last week. There could be a number of reasons behind it. It could be seasonal flu or something else. That’s why it’s advisable to visit a hospital if one is suffering from fever or cold,” said Chhetri. “So far, viral fever patients at the hospital have not tested positive for Covid-19.”
According to the District Health Office in Dang, the number of viral fever patients has increased in the district as well.
“The threat of coronavirus is still high and viral infection poses more challenges in dealing with the pandemic,” said Angad Bahadur Shahi, chief at the District Health Office in Dang.
At least two to three viral fever patients are visiting the Rapti Provincial Hospital in Tulasipur every day for treatment, according to Dr Binod Singh, medical superintendent at the hospital.
The Health Unit in Tansen Municipality of Palpa also reports a rise in viral fever cases alongside Covid-19 cases.
Chandra Tara Basyal, the public health inspector at the Health Unit in the municipality, said, “Viral fever and Covid-19 infections have risen in Tansen bazaar. Many people are found purchasing medicines for fever, cold and cough from local pharmacies.”
The 10-bed isolation ward of Rampur Hospital in Palpa is also occupied with viral fever and Covid-19 patients.
“The number of viral fever and Covid-19 patients has been increasing of late. It is a cause for concern, as we are still in the midst of the pandemic,” said Dr Bijaya Pariyar, acting medical superintendent of the hospital.
(Manoj Paudel in Kapilvastu, Durgalal KC in Dang and Madhab Aryal in Palpa contributed reporting.)