Bhubaneswar, Nov 18 (LocalWire): Snakebites have become the bane for people living in the rural parts of the state.
1. Very few people are aware that 90% snakes are non-poisonous and they cause no harm to humans by biting.
2. Deaths due to snakebites is incidentally higher than any other form of disaster-related human death in the state.
3. The snakebite fatality accounts for 37% of total disaster-induced death registered in the state. No other disaster claims more human lives than the snakebite toll of recent years.
4. The snakebite fatality was declared as a ‘state-specific disaster’ by Odisha government from 1 April, 2015.
5. Odisha accounted for 811 human fatalities due to snakebite in 2018-19. 237 people succumbed to snakebites during the first quarter of 2019-20 financial year, according to the latest figure released by the government.
6. The next of kin of the victims who die of snakebite are being covered under Rs 4 lakh compensatory award after the government had conferred snakebite as a state-specific disaster.
7.The six months from May to October have been identified as the period when maximum number of snakebite death occurs.
8. The forest and environment department has developed Information, Education Communication (IEC) Materials on do’s and don’ts on snakebites and is being widely circulated through panchayat bodies to sensitize the people.
9. Nearly 85% of snakebite deaths occurred during the six months from May to October showing a definite correlation with rain and flood.
10. Lack of medical facility often forces people to knock at the doors of ‘tantriks’ or witch-doctors to cure their near and near ones of the venom.
Majority of snakebite victims are rushed to these witchcraft practitioners. It mostly results in fatality. Unmanned health centres drive people to take recourse to traditional method healing.
11. All snakebite victims must be brought to nearest health institution at the earliest for medical examination and administering anti-snake venom (ASV), if required to save their lives. They must not avail treatment by quacks, according to advisory issued by the government.
12. The state government has asked the health department to ensure availability of at least one doctor in Primary Health Centres in the highly snakebite-prone areas.