Mangaluru, May 22, 2018: Two suspected Nipah patients have been admitted in two different hospitals in Mangaluru. "The suspected patients are not critical but have been treated at seclusion, and all preventive measures are in place to tackle the disease", said District Health Officer, Dr M Ramakrishna Rao.
The throat swab samples of the patients have been sent to Manipal Virus Research Center (MVRC) for testing. The report is expected by Wednesday evening or Thursday morning.
Addressing media persons here on Tuesday, Dr M Ramakrishna Rao said that between two suspected cases, one is from Kerala with travel history of visiting Kozhikode while another is a local person. The samples have been sent to Manipal Centre for Viral Research at Manipal and if found positive, the samples will be further sent to NIV, Pune for confirmation, after which it will be officially declared, he said.
He assured that there is no reason to panic as the district health department is fully prepared to tackle the disease, and the confirmation of suspected cases are expected within two days.
The district is on high alert after the outbreak at Kozhikode in Kerala as the movement from people in neighbouring Kerala to Mangaluru is significant for various needs including health care. All the Primary Healthcare Centres, taluk hospitals, and private hospitals have been instructed to report any suspected cases to district health department without delay, and all the hospitals have been instructed not to turn down suspected patients but keep district health department informed. An exclusive WhatsApp group has been created for the medical fraternity in the district to report any suspected cases, DHO said.
As part of precautionary measures, Rao urged people to exercise caution with fruits falling from the trees and not to consume them if there are any bite marks since fruit bats are major hosts of NIPAH virus. Considering the fact that the virus may also spread from the urine of the fruit bats, the drinking water should be thoroughly boiled before consumption, he said.