Muzaffarpur | Jagran News Desk: The death toll due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district has risen to 84 children now, reported news agency ANI.

However, officials continue to maintain that all the victims, most of whom are below the age of 10, have fallen prey to hypoglycemia, a condition caused by a very low level of blood sugar and electrolyte imbalance.

The children have died in two hospitals of the town -- the state-run Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCH) and the Kejriwal Hospital which is run by a trust..

Meanwhile, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan will be visiting Muzaffarpur today to take stock of the situation in view of rising cases of Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) and Japanese Encephalitis (JE).

"While the Centre is extending all support to the state for the containment and management of the recent surge of Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) and Japanese Encephalitis (JE) cases, I shall be going to Muzaffarpur tomorrow to take stock and review the situation at the site with the state government," Vardhan said on Saturday.

Vardhan said that the health ministry is constantly monitoring the situation and supporting the state health authorities in managing the AES/JE cases.

“The continued round-the-clock presence of the central and state teams in the affected areas and preventive actions taken by them have instilled confidence among the public. We will soon be able to contain the rise in AES/JE cases," Vardhan added.

Elaborating on the support being extended to the state of Bihar, Vardhan said, “A multi- disciplinary specialist high level team has been deployed by the Health Ministry. Experts drawn from NCDC/NVBDCP/ ICMR/AIIMS, Patna/ Child Health Division of the Health Ministry are part of this Central team and are supporting the state in containing the surge in cases of encephalopathy/ encephalitis.”

The Union Health Minister also met Mangal Pandey, Health Minister of Bihar, on two occasions recently and discussed the reported rise in cases of AES from Muzaffarpur and JE from Gaya in Bihar, and public health measures for their containment. 

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta