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18-year-old Woman Dies of Dengue in Hyderabad, Debt-distressed Father Struggles to Save Her Siblings

Two of her younger siblings, 7-year-old Suryanarayana, and 5-year-old Sanjana, are also in the ICU of the same hospital.

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Updated:September 19, 2019, 3:26 PM IST
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18-year-old Woman Dies of Dengue in Hyderabad, Debt-distressed Father Struggles to Save Her Siblings
Aedes aegypti mosquitoes with the dengue-blocking Wolbachia bacteria are seen inside a laboratory tube before being released in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil August 29, 2017. REUTERS/Pilar Olivares - RC1CABD69F30

An eighteen-year-old woman, S Supriya, died of the mosquito-borne disease dengue in Hyderabad on September 13. The teenager was rushed from a Nalgonda private hospital, 101 kms from the Telangana capital, to a bigger private hospital in Hyderabad for her treatment. However, she started to bleed internally and externally. She was in the ICU for a day before succumbing to the mosquito-borne disease the next afternoon.

Two of her younger siblings, 7-year-old Suryanarayana, and 5-year-old Sanjana, are also in the ICU of the same hospital, reported NDTV.

The report stated that her body was handed over after the family paid up Rs 45,000 apart from the Rs 50,000 the family had to cough up the first day for emergency critical care. However, her father could not perform his daughter's last rites as he had to be with his younger children. The mother took the teenager's body to their native Nellore district for cremation.

Telangana has seen 3,000 dengue cases being reported in September alone.

While unofficial figures say there have been 56 dengue-related deaths, the state government has maintained that no one has died of the disease this year. This comes despite hospitals issuing death certificates mentioning the cause of death as being the mosquito-borne disease.

Telangana Health Minister Etela Rajinder has even gone on to say that only when the death is confirmed by a committee set up by the government that looks at what kind of confirmatory tests were done and whether the fatality was caused by dengue related factors, will they consider it to be a dengue death.

As for Supriya's family, at the Hyderabad hospital, her sister's platelet count had fallen drastically and her brother's blood pressure was so low it could not be recorded.

Thankfully while the sister has been discharged, Suryanarayana is also now stable and ready for discharge — at a hefty bill of Rs 2.33 lakhs.

Speaking to NDTV, Supriya's cousin Gopi said that they had to pay almost one lakh rupees for Supriya's hospitalisation and critical care, they had to further cough up Rs 50,000 for Suryanarayana and the rest for Sanjana. He further revealed that there were at least 20 children with dengue in the children's ward of the hospital.

Her father G Nageswar Rao has now taken a private loan of Rs. 2 lakh at an interest of 24 per cent per annum in order to clear the hospital bills, after he was told that expenses for dengue will not be covered under "Arogyasree", the Telanagana government-run health insurance scheme.

While it will be a long road for the family to come out of the trauma and the financial burden it now faces, governments have issued notices to hospitals for proper diagnosis of dengue after it was alleged that many hospitals and labs are giving false positive cases following rapid tests.

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