Kolkata: Following the appearance of Nipah virus (NiV) in Kerala that has claimed 10 lives until now, state Health department is busy drafting advisories and has issued instructions to the state-run hospitals and medical colleges across the state.A senior official at the state Health department said all the hospitals have been alerted. They have been asked to report immediately if any patient is admitted with flu like symptoms.Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) has also asked its health centres to be alert. In case, a patient is having suspected symptoms, he or she must be referred Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsto a hospital.Fruit bats are among the carriers of the virus that is named after Kampung Sungai Nipah, a Malaysian village that first witnessed an outbreak in 1998.According to a senior physician in the city, people must refrain from visiting the southern state, particularly Kozhikode, suspected to be the epicentre of the fresh outbreak.The incidents were previously reported in Siliguri. In case of an attack, the mortality rate is much higher than other diseases. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedThe tests are done only at the National Institute of Virology in Pune.An orniathologist advised against the consumption of half-eaten fruits because health officials have suggested that the first patient in Kerala may have eaten mangoes that had residues of fruit bat saliva. The doctors have advised that people must be cautions while having cut fruits. Infected humans can develop encephalitis, or inflammation of the brain. The symptoms, typically starting about 5 to 14 days after the NiV infection, include high fever, headache, drowsiness and disorientation that can advance to coma and death. Some patients also have respiratory distress, doctors said.According to the doctors, treatment options are limited in this regard. The focus of NiV management should be on prevention. Strategies include intervention to prevent farm animals from acquiring NiV.Exerts said the healthcare workers should follow standard precautions, including washing hands and wearing gowns, caps, masks and gloves. If anybody complains of headache, fever or similar symptoms, he or she must be taken to a hospital immediately.
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