New Delhi, December 7: The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Thursday released an official statement refuting any connection between the recent pneumonia cases reported at AIIMS Delhi and the rise in respiratory infections among children in China. Dismissing media reports linking the two, the Health Ministry termed them as misleading and ill-informed.
Clarifying the situation, the health ministry emphasised that the seven pneumonia cases at AIIMS Delhi, detected during a study conducted from April to September 2023, were unrelated to the upsurge in respiratory infections in China or elsewhere globally. The statement aimed to alleviate concerns, highlighting that these cases should not cause alarm.
Moreover, the ministry said from January 2023 till present, no instances of Mycoplasma pneumonia were identified in the 611 samples tested at AIIMS Delhi's Department of Microbiology. These samples were part of the Indian Council of Medical Research's (ICMR) surveillance for various respiratory pathogens, predominantly severe acute respiratory illness (SARI), which accounted for about 95% of the cases, conducted using real-time PCR.
Mycoplasma pneumonia, the most common bacterial cause of community-acquired pneumonia, typically contributes to 15-30% of such infections. The Ministry underscored that there has been no reported surge in such cases across India.
Furthermore, the Union Health Ministry assured that it maintains close coordination with the state health authorities and monitors the situation regularly. They affirmed their commitment to staying vigilant and responsive to developments in this regard.