New Delhi: Under a sharp criticism for not undertaking the required measures to tackle the menace of Japanese Encephalitis (JE) and Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in parts of eastern Uttar Pradesh, the Central Government on Saturday approved the proposal of the state government to set up dedicated wards in the hospitals of Gorakhpur district.

Through a letter, Union Health Secretary PK Pradhan informed Sanjay Agarwal, State Principal Secretary Health informed that the state government can start construction of a 100-bed JE/AES ward at BRD Medical College with better equipments, facilities and manpower.

The government also gave nod to the installation of ventilator support systems in the newborn baby wards.
In the initial stage, the Central Government will release Rs 23 crore for the construction with funds available under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) flexi pool. Further grant will be made available once the utilization certificate is submitted with the health department

In his letter, Pradhan also expressed urgent need of similar JE/AES care system in the other six districts badly hit by the deadly disease.

Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad had visited Gorakhpur in October to stock the condition here.

After his suggestion to the Prime Minister, a Group of Ministers (GoM) was constituted to curb the menace.
The GoM aimed at suggesting measures for controlling mayhem created by the viruses and ensure grant of financial aid from the Centre for rehabilitation of the infected children. It would work on preventive, case management, and rehabilitation measures for consideration and approval of the Cabinet.