MANGALURU: The two suspected cases involve a 20 year old woman from Kasaragod who had travelled to the Kozhikode hospital where a nurse died due to the NIPAH virus recently. The woman was in close contact with the nurse and was brought to Dakshin Kannada by her sister who is a nursing student in a private nursing college in Mangaluru.
The patient then developed fever from Tuesday and has headache, nausea, bodyache for the past three days and was admitted in a private hospital where her throat swab and blood samples were taken.
The other patient is a 75 year old man who has no history of travel and is a resident of Mangaluru city. He came in complaining of fever and headache and his samples were also collecte and sent for analysis. He is currently admitted at the district wenlock hospital in Mangaluru.
Mahamood Sharif, research officer, Department of Health and Family Welfare, Karnataka, said, "We have formed Rapid Response teams in each district that comprise of six to seven members. They even go to the field if needed. They disseminate IEC (Information, Education and Communication) material at Primary Health Centre, Community Health Centre, Taluk and District Hospitals level.
They take care of logistics and manpower at hospitals if needed for Nipah. At the moment the samples of the two suspected cases have been sent for testing and they have been isolated. W eare not undertaking any active screening at airports because we believe that the spread of the infection is among lower income groups and people travelliung by road coming in from Kerala are likely to be carriers if at all they have exposed themselves to the virus."
Rathan Kelkar, National Health Mission, Karnataka, Director, said, "The suspected cases will be kept under strict surveillance." Dr PL Natraj, Director, Department of Health and Family Welfare, Karnataka, said, "We haven't received any circular from the Centre to undertake active screening. Our health staff have been sensitised about the disease and we are on standby."