Intense heat of more than 40 degrees in two of the most populous Indian states led to an avalanche of patients at health centers, many of them over the age of 60, with symptoms of high fever, vomiting, diarrhoea, breathing difficulties and heart problems.
A heat wave caused in a few days the death of at least 96 people in two of India’s most populous states, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, after local authorities warned residents over 60 and those with certain illnesses to stay home during the day, the Associated Press reported Sunday. .
In the state of Uttar Pradesh, 54 dead, all in Ballia district. Most of those who died were over the age of 60 and suffered from pre-existing health problems, which could have been aggravated by the intense heat. The situation is also exacerbated by the lack of drinking water.
State authorities have canceled authorization permit applications for medical personnel as hospitals are overcrowded with patients with symptoms of high fever, vomiting, diarrhoea, breathing difficulties and heart problems. A Ballia medical officer, SK Yadav, said that some 300 patients affected by the extreme heat had been admitted to the district hospital in the past three days.
This Sunday the temperature in the Ballia district reached 43 degrees Celsius5 degrees higher than normal. The effect of heat was also enhanced by 25% humidity. Meteorological services noted that no improvement is expected in the next 24 hours. Meanwhile, in the Bihar state capital, Patna, a maximum temperature of 44.7 degrees Celsius this Saturday.
The heat in the last two days claimed the lives of 42 people in the state of Bihar, 35 of whom died in Patna hospitals, where there were more than 200 patients with diarrhea and vomiting. The Bihar authorities were forced to extend the summer holidays in schools. The heat wave in the state is expected to continue for at least two more days.