The Central government will provide financial assistance to states to fight Japanese Encephalitis, which has already claimed around 1,000 lives, including 400 in western Uttar Pradesh alone.
A Cabinet committee on Thursday is expected to approve Rs. 4,000 crore [US$754 million] assistance plan which includes Rs. 2,000 crore for providing safe drinking water and sanitation and Rs. 1,300 crore to other ministries.
The plan includes funding for expanding the encephalitis vaccination programme to 62 districts, setting up special Intensive Care Units for the patients and capacity building at the district and the state level.
As per the Cabinet note circulated by the Health Ministry, the Central government will also provide funds for rehabilitation of the victims and improving their nutrition levels to fight the disease which has repeatedly hit several districts in western Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand.
A group of ministers had recommended a set of measures to check spread of the dreaded disease.
There are said to be 116 districts endemic to encephalitis. According to official records, about 4482 cases and 774 deaths due to acute encephalitis syndrome and Japanese encephalitis was reported in 2009.
The number was 5149 cases and 677 deaths in 15 states in 2010, which increased to around 6,000 cases and 700 deaths in 2011. In 2012, around 400 deaths have been reported till early October.