Health Ministry Asks States To Declare ‘Black Fungus’ A Notifiable Disease Under Epidemic Act

In a letter to the States and Union Territories, the Union Health Ministry on Thursday asked to make Mucormycosis or black fungus a notifiable disease under the Epidemic Diseases Act 1897.

In a letter to the States and Union Territories, the Union Health Ministry on Thursday asked to make Mucormycosis or black fungus a notifiable disease under the Epidemic Diseases Act 1897.

“The treatment of this fungal infection requires multidisciplinary approach consisting of Eye Surgeons, ENT specialists, General Surgeon, Neurosurgeon, Dental Maxillofacial surgeon etc. and institution of Amphotericin B as an antifungal medicine. You are requested to make mucormycosis a notifiable disease under Epidemic Diseases Act 1897, said the letter accessed by ANI.

The letter also stated that, “In recent times a new challenge in the form of a fungal infection namely Mucormycosis has emerged and is reported from many states amongst COVID 19 patients especially those on steroid therapy and deranged sugar control. This fungal infection is leading to prolonged morbidity and mortality amongst COVID 19 patients.”

Hence it has been ordered to all the government and private health facilities, medical colleges in the ministry states to follow the guidelines for screening, diagnosis, management of mucormycosis, issued by the union health ministry and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).

The ministry also urged to make it compulsory for all these facilities to report all suspected and confirmed cases to the Health Department through the district level Chief Medical Officer and subsequently to the Integrated Disease Surveillance Project (IDSP) surveillance system.

On May 18, the Haryana government also formed regulations called, “The Haryana Epidemic Diseases (Mucormycosis) Regulations, 2021”.  The rare fungal infection known as ‘mucormycosis’ or ‘black fungus’ has been rising in several parts of the country, so far black fungus cases have been reported in several states like Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana and Bihar.

Meanwhile, rajasthan is witnessing an increase in the number of cases of black fungus, so the state government on Wednesday had to declare the disease to be considered as an epidemic.

By coming in contact with the fungal spores in the environment, people are reporting to catch mucormycosis.

It can also develop on the skin after the fungus enters the skin through a cut, scrape, burn, or other types of skin trauma

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