Union health ministry urges all the states to consider and declare ‘Black fungus’ an epidemic

Union Health Ministry on Thursday urged the state governments to make ‘mucormycosis’ or black fungus a notifiable disease under the Epidemic Diseases Act 1897.

“All Government and private health facilities, medical colleges should follow guidelines for screening, diagnosis, management of mucormycosis, issued by MoHFW & ICMR,” the Union Health Ministry said.

The rare fungal infection called `mucormycosis` or `black fungus` is on the rise in several parts of the country, including Delhi. As per the Union Health Ministry, Mucormycosis or black fungus is a complication caused by a fungal infection.

People catch mucormycosis by coming in contact with the fungal spores in the environment. It can also develop on the skin after the fungus enters the skin through a cut, scrape, burn, or other types of skin trauma.

Mucormycosis or black fungus is primarily affecting people recovering from the COVID-19 infection. It has been declared as an epidemic in Telangana on Thursday. “Fungal infection Mucormycosis is declared as a notifiable disease under Epidemic Diseases Act 1897,” a statement issued by the Govt of Telangana said.

Earlier, the government of Rajasthan has declared black fungus an epidemic. In view of a growing number of Black Fungus cases, the Rajasthan government had on Wednesday declared the disease to be considered as an epidemic in the state.

According to sources, so far more than 130 cases of the fungal infection caused by the steroid administered in the treatment of COVID-19 infection have been reported in Delhi.

The Drug Controller General of India, in March this year, approved Mumbai-based bio-pharmaceutical firm Bharat Serums and Vaccines Limited to use anti-fungal medication Liposomal Amphotericin B or LAMB  as a medical intervention in patients of Mucormycosis.

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