Suspected Nipah virus in Kottayam, Kannur put on alert

The letter

The letter

"However, if travellers wish to be extra cautious, the may avoid the four districts".

Of the 13 confirmed cases, 10 persons have died. "Also, 95 families are under surveillance", health ministry official said.

When the virus infects human beings, it could range from merely being asymptomatic to also developing acute respiratory syndrome to fatal encephalitis.

Although no such case has been reported from any part of the state so far, the health department has asked the hospitals to prepare themselves for contingencies. Facilities for ensuring individual safety would be made available in all hospitals. A central team has been sent to the district to help the state administration.

This comes even as the authorities said that the situation was under control.

Nipah can be spread by fruit bats, pigs and through human-to-human contact.

At least nine other people have died in the Nipah outbreak in Kozhikode, formerly known as Calicut. On this occasion, pigs were the intermediate hosts. Some common signs and symptoms are headache, fever, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness and mental issues such as confusion.

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The major treatment for infected is "Intensive Supportive Care", according to United Nations health body. According to World Health Organization, human infections range from asymptomatic infection, acute respiratory infection (mild, severe), and fatal encephalitis. As a result of this, the patients with cold and fever are being treated with precaution. However, given the vast number of viral infections, it is recommended that you don't panic each time someone coughs or experiences respiratory problems, and instead, get a thorough check-up done.

An infected patient can fall into a coma within 48 hours. The incubation period ranges between 4 to 18 days.

Meanwhile, three teams of health experts deputed by the Centre are working in Kozhikode along with various teams of the state government, officials said.

Human-to-human transmission has also been documented.

Nursing students at various hospitals are the most scared of Nipah virus as mortality rate is high and it could spread fast.

Extending a helping hand to the family of nurse Lini Puthussery, who died after contracting Nipah from her patients, the Kerala government on Wednesday chose to give a government job to her husband and Rs 10 lakh each to two of their children.

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