Kerala Nipah alert: 'Govt viewing situation seriously,' says CM Vijayan

Health officials suspect Nipah virus infection to be behind the two “unnatural deaths” reported from a private hospital in Kozhikode.

Published: 12th September 2023 04:43 PM  |   Last Updated: 12th September 2023 06:14 PM   |  A+A-

CM Pinarayi Vijayan (Photo | EPS)

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan (File photo | EPS)


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday said that the State government is viewing the two “unnatural deaths” reported from Kozhikode very seriously and that the health department has issued an alert in the district.

Health officials suspect Nipah virus infection to be behind the two “unnatural deaths” reported from a private hospital in Kozhikode.

In a video message posted on his Facebook page, the chief minister advised people to exercise caution and said there was no reason to worry as those who were in close contact with the deceased were under treatment.

"There is nothing to worry about. Those who were in contact with the deceased are being traced and treated. Being careful is the key to tackling the situation. Everyone is requested to cooperate with the action plan prepared by the health department," Chief Minister Vijayan said.

The CM further informed that surveillance operations in the area had begun on Monday. 

Earlier today, Health Minister Veena George reached Kozhikode and held a meeting with the district authorities. The Minister of the Public Works Department has also gone to Kozhikode, Vijayan said.The state has not officially announced the outbreak of the Nipah.

"The result of samples which were sent to Pune Virology Lab will be obtained by today evening," she said, adding, "They will make a list of contacts of deceased."

The two deaths took place at a private hospital in Kozhikode and relatives of one of the deceased are in the Intensive Care Unit of the hospital, stated the Kerala health department.

The state department has also issued an alert in the district. The first death took place on August 30 and the second death on Monday.

The health minister has directed local health workers to keep a close vigil in their areas.

As a precautionary measure, the Health Ministry has also directed for an isolation facility in Kozhikode Medical College.

Earlier in Kerala there was a Nipah virus outbreak in the Kozhikode and Malappuram districts in 2018 and later in 2021, a case of Nipah virus was reported in Kozhikode.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Nipah Virus is caused by fruit bats and is potentially fatal to humans as well as animals. Along with respiratory illness, it is also known to cause fever, muscular pain, headache, fever, dizziness, and nausea. 

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