Published: Fri, June 01, 2018
Medicine | By Melba Vasquez

Nipah virus: Kerala to send fresh samples of fruit bats for testing

Nipah virus: Kerala to send fresh samples of fruit bats for testing

While the cause of the outbreak is still being investigated, visiting national health officials tied the initial deaths to "many bats" in a well in Kerala from which the victims drew water, the government said.

Twenty six-year-old Abin, hailing from Palazhi in the district, died at a private hospital after battling for life for one week, official sources said. While responding to Nipah virus, Mr. Vij said that he has ordered the Health Department to become alert.

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Nipah virus (NiV) infection in humans has a range of clinical presentations, from asymptomatic infection to acute respiratory syndrome and fatal encephalitis, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Haryana's Health Minister Anil Vij, who is oftentimes in headlines due to his controversial statements, has launched a high-speed rocket through his comment on today by comparing Congress Chief Rahul Gandhi to Nipah Virus.

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The Nipah viral outbreak has so far claimed 13 lives in the two affected districts of Kozhikode and Malappuram. The blood samples have been sent to Pune for examination. Precautionary measures have been taken by the government against its spread.

Last week, the ministry also asked residents to put off travel to Kerala unless absolutely necessary. It has now been close to a week since the dreaded Nipah virus outbreak hit Kozhikode in north Kerala. In these cases, people can become drowsy, disoriented and suffer convulsions and coma. Preliminary information indicates that the primary host of the disease is the fruit bat, where the virus is transmitted through secretions from the bat to the fruit that it feeds on or touches.

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"Since he was travelling alone, we have contacted the police to trace his family", said Bandekar.State epidemiologist and nodal officer Dr Utkarsh Betodkar said, "There is no need to panic". There is no vaccine against the virus which was first identified in 1998 in Kampung Sungai Nipah, Malaysia.

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