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TelanganaBlack fungus posing fresh challenges to health care facilities in Telangana

Black fungus posing fresh challenges to health care facilities in Telangana

Published: 21st May 2021 12:03 am

Hyderabad: The Government ENT Hospital in King Koti and Gandhi Hospital on Thursday continued to receive patients with suspected symptoms of Mucormycosis also known as black fungus, an ailment that has now started to pose fresh challenges to government and private healthcare facilities.

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At present, over 50 patients are admitted to the ENT Hospital in Koti and receiving treatment while more admissions are expected in the coming days. To reduce the patient load at ENT Hospital, the health authorities have issued directions to all ENT Departments in the government teaching hospitals in Telangana to start providing treatment to such patients in districts.

“Compared to last year, the second wave of the Covid pandemic has been intense. As a result, Covid positive patients had to be administered steroids and other drugs that reduce immunity. While Covid patients have recovered, their immunity was compromised and now we are looking at a large number of Mucormycosis cases,” explains Assistant Professor, ENT Hospital, Koti, Dr Ravi Shankar.

The life-saving antifungal medicine Liposomal Amphotericin B against Mucormycosis is in extreme shortage and is being rationed through a special committee set up by the State government. The drug is being allocated by the Union Health Ministry and based on the available data, Telangana will receive about 1,050 vials of the drug by month-end.

A typical Mucormycosis patient during treatment has to be administered with anywhere between 40 and 60 vials of the drug and 1,050 vials are expected to fall short of meeting the demand among patients in Telangana. Due to the shortage of Amphotericin, authorities are suggesting alternative drugs including Posaconazole and Isavuconazole for treatment.

However, given a large number of Covid cases during the second wave, the demand for alternative therapies is expected to outstrip the supply.

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