Bird flu: Kerala health dept strengthens preventive measures

As per the plan, a fever survey will be conducted within a 3km radius of the area where bird flu has been reported and swab samples will be tested to confirm the absence of bird flu.
Representational image of bird flu.
Representational image of bird flu. (File Photo | Debadatta Mallick, EPS)

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The health department held a meeting on Friday to prepare an action plan in the wake of bird flu outbreak in Alappuzha. Health Minister Veena George said preventive measures have been taken by enhancing surveillance and arranging facilities. The minister stressed on measures to prevent the infection from spreading to people.

As per the plan, those with fever and other symptoms in the affected areas will be subjected to special observation for two weeks. A special OP, instead of a general OP, will be arranged in government hospitals to examine them. A fever survey will be conducted within a 3km radius of the area where bird flu has been reported and swab samples will be tested to confirm the absence of bird flu.

Field-level activities will be strengthened under the leadership of Asha workers and field-level employees. Those who come into contact with birds infected with avian influenza should be directed to strictly observe quarantine.

“Surveillance will be strengthened in areas within 10km radius of this area. Any bird deaths should be reported immediately. Volunteers trained in One Health will also be involved,” said the minister.

The meeting also assessed the hospital preparedness. The General Hospital in Alappuzha has been designated as an isolation centre if there are cases of duck-to-human transmission.

The Alappuzha Medical College Hospital superintendent has been directed to arrange facilities for patients with serious symptoms associated with bird flu. A nodal officer will be appointed to coordinate the activities.

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