Nipah effect: Travel agents deny bookings for Kerala

Nipah effect: Travel agents deny bookings for Kerala

Nipah effect: Travel agents deny bookings for Kerala

"They have been asked to immediately report to the authorities", said state epidemiologist at the State Health Society Bihar, Ragini Mishra.

Their samples were sent to the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune, to check the possibilities of the virus, which has been giving jitters to the medical fraternity and the administration in Kerala.

Nipah virus which has claimed 12 lives in Kerala has caused panic among Ludhiana's travel agents, who have started to decline bookings for the southern state in view of the virus attack.

In a major relief to the District Administration, a youth, who was suspected to be infected by the deadly Nipah Virus (NiV) and was being treated at the isolated ward of the K.R. Hospital in city has been certified not Nipah-infected.

The virus spreads through close contact with people's secretions and excretions. "Also, Mohap is in continuous coordination with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to implement the global recommendations", read the statement.

Various state governments have issued directives and advisories and have urged people to take immediate measures in case they experience symptoms of the virus, and refrain from travelling to Kerala. Eating food which may have the droplets of saliva and urine of infected bats can lead to the transmission of the virus.

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The direction on this was issued by Health Minister K K Shylaja on the advise of the Central team that toured the affected areas in the state. "People should avoid going to areas that might have bats".

He said as the weather in Goa is hot at the moment, people are preferring to travel to Malaysia and Singapore whose packages are nearly similar to that of Kerala and Goa.

The Nipah virus is a zoonotic disease that is naturally transmitted from vertebrate animals to humans, while human-to-human transmission has also been documented.

Its natural host are fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family, and it was first identified just 20 years ago in 1998 when an outbreak occurred in Kampung Sungai Nipah in Malaysia.

In the meantime, the doctors also enquired about the health of other members of Salih's family and discovered that Salih's brother, Muhammed Sabith, had died on May 5 at Kozhikode Medical College Hospital after showing the same symptoms. This infection is very rare and also there is no vaccine available as of now.

It said that Nipah symptoms are not specific and include flu-like illness and hence can be confused with any respiratory illness.

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