New Delhi, September 12
The Centre on Tuesday rushed disease surveillance experts to Kerala's Kozhikode after confirmation of two deaths due to the Nipah virus disease.
2 more infected
Kerala Health Minister Veena George on Tuesday said a nine-year-old boy and another person has been infected with Nipah
Confirming the two deaths due to Nipah, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said Central teams had been sent to Kerala to assist the state in management of the disease. This is the fourth Nipah virus outbreak in Kerala after previous ones in 2018, 2019 and 2021.
In the current case, samples from two persons who died due to unnatural causes at a private hospital in Kozhikode yesterday, were sent to the National Institute of Virology in Pune for processing. The samples returned positive, said Mandaviya.
Kerala Health Minister Veena George apprised Mandaviya of the situation today and said systems were in place to contain the disease.
After Mandaviya confirmed Nipah as the cause of death, George also said the state government was yet to hear from the NIV Pune.
The first outbreak of Nipah in Kerala (2018) in Kozhikode and Malappuram had claimed 17 lives. The subsequent two had claimed a life each.
Immediate preventive action would involve active case search in the family of the deceased, tracing of any contacts the deceased may have met during the past 12 days; strict quarantine of the contacts and isolation of suspects; collection and transportation of samples for lab testing.
Nipah virus spreads from the saliva of fruit bats and the disease is a matter of concern due to a 70 per cent mortality rate and a strain it might cause to health systems with Covid still surging in Kerala. There is no cure for Nipah and supportive care is the only option.
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