Muzaffarpur | Jagran News Desk: The death toll due to suspected acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) has risen to 100 children in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district, Sunil Kumar Shahi, Superintendent at Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital, said on Monday.

However, state government officials continue to maintain that majority of the victims had died due to hypoglycemia, a condition caused by very low level of blood sugar and electrolyte imbalance.  

On Sunday, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan visited the families of the deceased children.

Acknowledging the paucity of paediatric ICU at SKMCH, he announced that the medical college will have a 100-bed paediatric ICU in a separate building that will be constructed within the same campus in a year.

A "state-of-the-art" research centre will also come up at Muzaffarpur, he said.

Attributing heat and humidity as a possible reason behind the disease, the minister said the Ministry of Earth Sciences would help formulate an action plan with the state government to deal with the situation.

Vardhan asked health officials to expedite and complete the super-specialty block of the SKMCH, so that other departments of the facility could extend help and cooperation in tackling with the disease.

The minister said he met around 100 ailing children at the medical facility and their parents. "I went through each individual's case sheet," he said.

Seven children admitted at SKMCH and four in Kejriwal hospital were stated to be in serious condition, the release said.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has already announced Rs 4 lakh ex gratia to the next of the kin of the deceased.  

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta