Nipah outbreak will soon be contained: Centre

New Delhi: In the wake of the sudden outbreak of Nipah virus in Kerala, Minister of State (MoS) for Health and Family Welfare, Ashwini Kumar Choubey said his seven-member team is working in full swing to contain the situation.

“All the areas which are affected by the virus have been alerted and arrangements are being made for more number of isolation wards in hospitals, as this is a contagious disease and spreads through contact. There is no need to panic. We have not issued any advisory yet, but if required, we will do so, based on doctors’ input,” he told ANI.

Choubey further noted that the Ministry is in constant touch with the Kerala government and is keeping an eye on the situation there. He also said a team of doctors have been deployed at all international airports as part of precautionary measures.

“It (Nipah Virus) is contagious, but not epidemic. Findings suggest that the disease spreads through bats and pigs. However, my seven-member team is keeping a close watch to prevent further outbreak of the disease,” he said.

A total of nine persons have died so far in Kerala’s Kozhikode district due to viral fever, out of which two were diagnosed with Nipah virus, the state health department confirmed on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, J.P. Nadda said he is closely monitoring the situation arising out of reported cases of death due to Nipah virus in Kerala, and assured all support necessary support to Kerala in treating those affected by the virus.

Following the directions of the Union Health Minister, a multi-disciplinary central team from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) is presently in Kerala reviewing the situation.

The central team includes Dr. Sujeet K Singh, Director, NCDC, Dr. S K Jain, Head Epidemiology, NCDC Dr. P Ravindran, Director, Emergency Medical Relief (EMR), Dr. Naveen Gupta, Head Zoonosis, NCDC, Dr. Ashutosh Biswas, Professor of Internal Medicine, AIIMS, Dr. Deepak Bhattacharya, Pulmonologist, Safdarjung Hospital, along with two clinicians and one expert from the Ministry of Animal Husbandry. (ANI)