Nipah situation under control, no need for panic, says Union Health Minister JP Nadda

By: | Published: June 5, 2018 2:59 PM

The outbreak in Kerala has become a serious political issue with opposition alleging the ruling CPI government of failing to control the situation.

As many as 16 people lost their lives in Kerala due to the outbreak of the virus in May. (File image, Express photo by Oinam Anand)

Union Health Minister JP Nadda on Tuesday said that there is no need to panic and the government is monitoring the current outbreak of Nipah virus in Kerala and the disease is under control. “Within 12 hours of Nipah Virus outbreak, team of doctors reached Kerala, discussed disease management and controlled it in a time-bound manner. Health ministry & I are personally monitoring the situation. There is no need to panic,” ANI quoted Union Minister JP Nadda as saying on June 5.

Earlier on Monday, Nadda said that Nipah is a result of tampering with nature, “All such incidents were the result of tampering with nature. Nipah Virus wasn’t a man-made problem. There were natural reasons. Every person suffering from the virus has been mapped and those in contact with such patients have been detected,” Nadda had said in Raipur.

As many as 16 people lost their lives in Kerala due to the outbreak of the virus in May. All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Safdarjung Hospital, National Institute of Virology in Pune and doctors from the National Centre for Disease Control are supporting health authorities in Kerala in managing the outbreak.

Nipah Virus is an infectious disease that broke out in Malaysia and Singapore in 1998 and 1999. It is caused by a Ribonucleic acid virus of the family, Paramyxoviridae, and is closely related to Hendra virus. It was first registered in domestic pigs. The virus has the potential to affect other animals like dogs, cats, sheep and goats and humans are also not immune to the disease. The deaths reported in India is an example and elsewhere is an example

According to the World Health Organisation, Nipah is a virus that can cause a future epidemic. Other than Kerala, outbreaks have been recorded in West Bengal, Bangladesh, Malaysia and eastern coast of Australia.

As far as treatment of the disease is concerned, it is limited to supportive care, and there is no vaccine available to prevent the disease as of now.

Meanwhile, on May 29, United Arab Emirates banned imports from Kerala following the outbreak of the virus. Saudi Arabia has also banned frozen and processed fruit and vegetables from Kerala due to health concerns.

The outbreak in Kerala has become a serious political issue with opposition alleging the ruling CPI government of failing to control the situation. On May 4, some legislators protested by wearing masks in the legislative assembly of the state.

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