WhatsApp Image 2023-02-26 at 9.49.20 AM (1)
WhatsApp Image 2023-02-26 at 9.49.20 AM

Nipah scare hits Kerala amidst rising Covid-19 cases

Kochi: Close on the heels of a 12 year old child succumbing to NIPAH virus infections, two persons have come under surveillance after they started showing signs of the infection in Kozhikode. The two are health workers who were in contact with the deceased child. 

One of them is from Calicut Medical College while the other is from a private hospital. The child was first taken to a private clinic where nine persons came in contact with the child who was later taken to a private hospital where seven people interacted with the child. Again the child was referred to another private hospital from where he was finally taken to Calicut Medical College.

The central team, which has arrived in Kerala to aid the state in public health officials, visited the house of the boy who died of the virus. The team has collected the samples of Rambutan fruits from the premises of the house and from the nearby areas. The members had earlier said that the boy might have contracted the virus after consuming the fruit.

The Chathamangalam Panchayat where the deceased boy was residing and adjacent areas are completely cordoned off after the boy was found infected with Nipah virus. The three-km radius from the boy’s house is now a containment zone.

In total 188 persons have come in contact with the child out of them there are 20 high-risk cases. Two of them are showing symptoms of the disease. The remaining high-risk cases are being shifted to a special ward in the medical college. The pay ward in the hospital block has been turned into a Nipah treatment centre. The first floor will take care of Nipah positive cases while the remaining two wards will take care of those who are under observation. Intensive control has been imposed three kilometres around Chathamangalam Panchayath where the house of the deceased child is located. The area has been declared as a containment zone.

Alert has been sounded in Kozhikode and nearby areas. Point of care tests will be carried out on the high-risk persons by tomorrow. A team of virologists will arrive from Pune for this. Point-of-care testing helps in getting test results fast unlike conventional ways of long delay. 

If one is found positive then a confirmatory test is carried out which will take 12 hours to deliver the results, media reports quoting health Minister Veena George said.

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