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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 256-261

Mucormycosis, COVID-19 Pandemic and the Lessons Learnt: A Review

1 1Department of Community Medicine, LLR Medical College, Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Director-Projects, Human Capital Lighthouse Consulting Private Limited, New Delhi, India
3 Centre for Community Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
4 Integrated Department of Community Medicine and Pediatrics, Foundation for People-Centric Health Systems, New Delhi, India
5 Health Division, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) India Country Office, New Delhi, India
6 Integrated Department of Community Medicine and Pediatrics, Foundation for People-Centric Health Systems, New Delhi; Adjunct Professor, SD Gupta School of Public Health, IIHMR University, Jaipur, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Chandrakant Lahariya
Foundation for People-Centric Health Systems, B-2/105, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi - 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JME.JME_122_22

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Mucormycosis emerged as a major public health challenge during the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in India in mid-2021. The disease, colloquially known as the Black fungus, was declared epidemic by the government. This review describes the epidemiological pattern and the determinants of mucormycosis. The review also proposes evidence based public health strategies for the prevention and control of mucormycosis. The rationale use of steroids in clinical management, formulation of evidence-based standard treatment guidelines and adherence to those guidelines by physicians, the strengthening of primary healthcare services to facilitate early care; compliance with infection prevention and control measures at all the health facilities; and early diagnosis and case management are the key strategies to prevent future emergence of mucormycosis. The article concludes that it is not enough that we tackle a health challenge at hand, in crisis mode. It is equally important that we derive learnings and take measures prevent any future. Effective control of mucormycosis and prevention of future outbreaks of disease is possible through coordinated actions of health policy makers, public health experts and clinicians. The entire episode is also a reminder for strengthening India's health systems at all levels – primary, secondary and tertiary – as well as in both public and private sector.

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