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Encephalitis outbreak in Bihar: Muzaffarpur hospital converts prisoners' ward into ICU to accommodate more children

File photo. Photograph:( Reuters )

WION Web Team Muzaffarpur Jun 20, 2019, 01.25 PM (IST)

To accommodate the rising number of encephalitis patients, Shri Krishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCH) in Muzfafarpur has converted prisoners' ward into an ICU, reported news agency ANI.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who visited the hospital on Tuesday, had instructed the hospital management to convert the prisoners' ward into an ICU to meet the acute crisis of beds.

Encephalitis has claimed lives of over 120 children in Muzaffarpur district. The chief minister has announced an ex gratia compensation of Rs 4 lakh each to the families of the children who died due to encephalitis.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has agreed to hear a plea next Monday, seeking a direction to the Centre to urgently constitute a team of medical experts for the treatment of the children in Muzaffarpur.

The petition, filed by advocate Manohar Pratap, has sought a direction to the Centre for constituting a board of experts in the medical field and immediately sending it to the place of the outbreak i.e. Muzaffarpur, to review and assist the emergency situation and provide all necessary medical equipment for the effective treatment of the children.

On Sunday, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan visited the families of the children suffering from suspected acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) in Muzaffarpur and assured them of all possible help from the Centre. He also held a meeting with senior officials and doctors.

"I assure the people of the area, especially the affected families, that the government will extend all possible help and measures to the state government," Vardhan said.

(With inputs from agencies)