Japanese Encephalitis targets 2 more, toll at 515

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Gorakhpur, Dec 6 (UNI) The killer vector-borne menace, Japanese Encephalitis (JE), continued to claim lives of children in eastern Uttar Pradesh with the toll mounting to 515, following two more deaths in the last 24 hours.

Since January, 2,698 JE patients had been admitted at the famous Baba Raghav Das Medical College here and other hospitals of the division, of which 515, including 60 Biharis and four Nepalis, succumbed.

Almost 75 patients -- including five fresh cases -- are still recuperating.

The JE patients trickle from Gorakhpur, Deoria, Maharajganj, Sant Kabirnagar, Kushinagar, Ballia, Gonda, Bahraich, Mau, Basti, Siddharthnagar, Azamgarh, Gonda and Balrampur districts of Uttar Pradesh.

Gorakhpur has the dubious distiction of being the JE epicentre in the region. The endemic afflicts eastern UP during monsoon every year. Last year, the killer disease had taken almost 1,000 people in its jaws.

The government undertakens a massive vaccination drive against the vector-borne disease every year, however, the efficacy and penetration of the drive comes under cloud with the mounting toll.

UNI

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