The government of West Bengal has declared black fungus or mucormycosis a notifiable disease under the Epidemic Act after considering the gravity of the situation and reports of an increased incidence of fungal infection in the state.
Citing an order issued by the health department, an official said that it has been made mandatory for a doctor to notify the authority on diagnosing a case of a confirmed or suspected mucormycosis, Livemint reported.
The health department has issued a format for case notification, which includes sharing all related information including the patient's personal details, history, examination and investigation findings and also outcome data in case of death.
West Bengal is the tenth state in India that declared the fungal infection an epidemic.
According to a report in PTI, the state has recorded two deaths due to black fungus so far and 10 people were under treatment for the disease in the state till 24 May.
Earlier the state health department formulated an advisory for the common people. It mentioned warning signs of the disease such as pain and redness around eyes or nose, fever, headache, coughing and shortness of breath along with vomiting blood and 'altered mental status' - general changes in brain function like confusion, amnesia, loss of alertness and disorientation.
Those having health conditions such as uncontrolled diabetes, suppression of immune system by steroids, prolonged stay in ICU, comorbidities post-transplant and malignancy are prone to be attacked by the fungal disease, it said.