K’taka mulls black fungus treatment under Ayushman Bharat Arogya Karnataka scheme


With Karnataka’s second Covid wave slowly on the wane and cases of black fungus on the rise, state’s Health Minister K. Sudhakar on Saturday said that the government is contemplating to include treatment of black fungus infection (mucormycosis) under the existing Ayushman Bharat Arogya Karnataka scheme.

Sudhakar told media that many lower middle-class and low income people are coming to the government hospitals and medical colleges for free black fungus treatment.

He added that the Chief Minister had announced free treatment of black fungus in the government hospitals or government-run medical colleges.

“As the cost of treatment of this infection is around Rs 2 to Rs 3 lakh, the state government is planning to include this infection under the existing Ayushman Bharat Arogya Karnataka scheme, as this infection needs at least two to three weeks of hospital monitoring is required while and it takes about five to six weeks for complete recovery,” Sudhakar said.

The Minister further said that as of today there are 1,784 cases of black fungus reported in the state while 62 have recovered and 111 have succumbed to this dreaded infection.

“There is no shortage of any medicine. Sufficient medicines are allocated to the state. The union government has allocated 9,750 vials of Amphotericin B – an antifungal drug used to treat this infection has been allocated to Karnataka by centre.

We have received 8,860 on Friday and till date the state has received 18,650 vials. 8,860 vials have been used by government hospitals and 9,740 vials have been provided to private hospitals,” Sudhakar added.

Observing that the second wave of the pandemic was on wane and it would come under complete control in the state by the end of June, he said that about 70-75 lakh people will be inoculated this month.

“About 1.5 crore doses have been administered in the state since anti-Covd vaccination drive started from January 16 onwards, and by the end of June about 2.25 crore people would have received at least single dose of vaccine in our state,” the Minister added.