Amid a rise in cases of the Nipah virus in Kerala, the neighbouring state of Karnataka has decided to enhance surveillance in its border districts.
Latest updates: One more case of Nipah virus was confirmed in Kozhikode district, taking the current toll of active cases in the state to 4, according to the Kerala Health Minister's Office. The 39-year-old man is currently hospitalised and under observation.
Karnataka's response: A circular issued by the Karnataka government on 14 September, said that in light of the four (now six) confirmed Nipah cases and two deaths in Kozhikode, there is a need to strengthen surveillance activities in districts of Karnataka that share a border with Kerala, such as Chamarajanagar, Mysore, Kodaga, and Dakshin Kannada, reported PTI.
The circular also urges people to "avoid unnecessary travel of the general public from Karnataka to the affected area of Kerala."
Check points for fever surveillance at points of entry from Karnataka to Kerala are to be set up.
More about Nipah virus: Nipah virus or NiV infection is a zoonotic virus, which is found in both animals and humans, but primarily spreads from animals to humans.
Symptoms of Nipah virus generally show up 4 to 14 days after infection.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), these include,
Acute respiratory infection (ranges from mild, severe)
Encephalitis and Seizures (in severe cases)
There is no treatment for Nipah virus per se, except symptom management and hydration.
You can, however, protect yourself from getting infected by following these precautionary measures.
Wash your hands regularly.
Cover nose and mouth with a mask if you have any symptoms, or are around those with flu-like symptoms.
Avoid eating raw fruits, fruits found on the ground, or plucked from trees in areas where bats are found.
Avoid visiting the endemic area until the disease is curtailed.
Avoid contact with the blood or body fluids of any person known to be infected with NiV.