Two people suspected to be infected with the brain-damaging Nipah virus are under treatment in Karnataka, a health official said on Wednesday, after an outbreak of the rare virus in neighbouring Kerala state killed 10.
The Economic Times reported that symptoms of the Nipah virus were seen in a 20-year old woman and a 75-year-old man in Karnataka’s port city of Mangalore after they travelled to Kerala and came into contact with infected patients there, Rajesh B.V., a district surveillance officer said by phone.
“They are not confirmed Nipah Virus cases yet, so there is no need to panic … the situation is under control,” he said, adding that blood samples of the two people have been sent to Manipal Centre for Virus Research and results are awaited by Thursday, according to The Economic Times.
However, The News Minute news site reported that, the 75-year-old man has no history of travel.
It also reported that District Health Officer Dr M Ramakrishna Rao said, “The department is quite alert and messages have been sent to all government and private hospitals. Since hospitals in Mangaluru get a large number of patients from Kerala, we have directed them to report immediately if they come across any suspected cases of Nipah Virus infection. Taluk hospitals and primary health centres too have been warned to be alert. We are in touch with doctors in all hospitals in the district.”
Currently both of the patients are placed in quarantine.
The News minute also reported that, the Union Health Ministry has said that the Nipah virus outbreak in Kerala is a localised occurrence and there is no threat of its spread.
The ministry said “the outbreak is unlikely to spread” as early and efficient containment measures have been jointly undertaken both by itself and the Kerala government.