News of the presence of the virus was first reported from Kozhikode earlier this week, and now, at least 16 deaths have been confirmed to have taken place due to the “rare and deadly” virus.
Baptisms, house-warming parties, marriages and prayer gatherings that can be postponed should be rescheduled considering the situation following the nipah outbreak, Bishop Mar Remigiose Inchananiyil has said in the circular. “However unnecessary travel to the affected districts of Kerala can be avoided for time being”, the advisory said. And scientists say that the Nipah virus has two strains – Malaysia (NiVM) and Bangladesh (NiVB). All body fluid of the infected person contains the virus which can be transmitted to another by direct exposure to these fluids or through contact of blood of the two persons.
The government is coordinating with all relevant sectors including zoonosis, wildlife, animal husbandry, human health, clinicians, pulmonologists, neurologists and private sector. Possible routes of transmission for this outbreak include consumption of fruits partially eaten by the bats, exposure to the virus by bats or human-to-human transmission through unprotected close contact in the community or hospital. Subsequent outbreaks in India and Bangladesh have occurred with high fatality rate.
Health minister K K Shailaja said that those in contact with Nipah patients should be cautious till the end of the virus’s incubation period and, hence, daily screening of these people has become essential to stop the spread of this unsafe virus. Nipah virus has killed 16 of the 18 infected people in the state so far.
Another person admitted in the hospital was also tested positive, that is raising fresh concerns about the viral occurrence. After she fell ill, she was shifted from the Pariyaram Medical College to the Kozhikode Medical College hospital as she showed symptoms similar to that of the Nipah virus.
Don’t consume raw date palm sap.
“Almost 2,000 people have been reported to have come in contact with the affected and, therefore, this figure might go up”.