Nipah in Kozhikode: 11 hospitalised with symptoms, high risk contact list swells to 54

Nipah in Kozhikode
Police closes the road at Kulamadu junction in Kozhikode after a 12-year-old boy dies of the Nipah virus here. Photo: Sajeesh Sankar/Manorama

Eleven more people were admitted to the Government Medical College in Kozhikode with Nipah symptoms on Monday, informed Health Minister Veena George at a press conference in Kozhikode on Monday. The test results are expected soon.

Thirty-eight persons are currently under isolation at the hospital.

Only one confirmed Nipah case has been reported from the district so far.

The 12-year-old boy succumbed to the virus on Sunday morning.

The health department has prepared a list of 251 persons who might have come in contact with the deceased boy. Of this, 54 persons, including 30 health workers, have been included in the high-risk category.

“The condition of all the 11 persons with symptoms is stable now,” the minister said.

She said the vaccination drive against COVID-19 has been suspended for 48 hours in Kozhikode Taluk in the wake of Nipah scare.

The zoonotic Nipah virus had killed 23 persons (16 confirmed deaths and seven suspected) in Kozhikode and Malappuram districts in 2018. Two people had survived the infection.

Kozhikode, Kannur and Malappuram districts have been on high alert since Sunday after the re-emergence of the virus.

Testing facility

Minister Veena George said a facility to test samples of suspected contacts has been set up at the Medical College Hospital. “A team from the National Institute of Virology has set up the facility. This will ensure speedy identification of the virus. But the samples will be sent to the Pune lab for final confirmation,” she said.

Rambutan samples

A team from the Animal Husbandry department visited the victim’s house at Chathamangalam and collected fruits from the two Rambutan trees in its premises on Monday. “The team has identified the presence of bats in the vicinity,” the minister said.

Nipah enquiry counters

The health department has launched four round-the-clock Nipah enquiry counters at the government guest house in Kozhikode. People can contact the following telephone numbers for their queries related to Nipah anytime. 0495- 2382500, 0495-2382501, 0495-2382800, 0495-2382801.

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