With 31,216 cases and 2,109 deaths in the country in the last three weeks, Black Fungus, a potentially fatal condition increasingly seen in recovering Covid patients, has increased by over 150 per cent, putting additional strain on an already strained healthcare system fighting the deadly second Covid wave. The increase in numbers is driven, in part, by a severe shortage of the key drug – Amphotericin-B – to treat affected patients.
Maharashtra leads the states with 7,057 Black Fungus cases and 609 deaths, followed by Gujarat with 5,418 cases and 323 deaths. Rajasthan is the third most affected state, with 2,976 cases, but Karnataka is the third most affected state, with 188 deaths. In comparison, Maharashtra had 2,770 Black Fungus cases on May 25, while Gujarat had 2,859 cases on the same day.
The most populated state, Uttar Pradesh, has reported 1744 cases and 142 deaths, while Delhi has reported 1,200 cases and 125 deaths. On the same day, UP reported 701 cases, while Delhi reported 119. Jharkhand has the fewest cases (96), whereas West Bengal has the fewest deaths (23).
The Bombay High Court ordered the Centre to give details of the amount of anti-fungal medications allocated to various states for the treatment of Black Fungus earlier this week. Given the number of instances reported in Maharashtra, the court proposed allocating extra Amphotericin-B to the state during a hearing on a petition.