No threat to Kerala from Nipah virus: IMA

Thiruvananthapuram/Kozhikode,(IANS) Indian Medical Association (IMA) President Ravi Wankadekar on Saturday said Kerala need not worry about the Nipah virus as the state is absolutely safe from it now.

State Tourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran said that Kerala was indeed a safe destination as around 300 doctors arrived in Kerala from various parts of India for the IMA conference to be held at Kovalam.

“The arrival of the renowned doctors to Kerala has an immense significance,” said Surendran.

Wankedekar, who is in the capital city for the IMA conference, said that the virus outbreak does not hold any threat.

“Around 300 doctors arriving in the state itself shows that the virus isn’t a threat at all,” said the IMA President.

State Health Minister K.K. Shailaja said that the medical teams of the Centre, state and the private sectors need to be complimented for effectively containing the outbreak.

“Of the 18 positive cases, 16 have died and the remaining two are recovering well at the Kozhikode hospital. In all we had sent 193 samples of which 175 were negative.

“Almost 2,000 people have been reported to have come in contact with the affected and this figure might go up. Things are in control, but we have to be very careful” said Shailaja.

Anxious moments were witnessed on Saturday morning when it was wrongly reported that a 38-year-old woman had died in Kannur district due to the Nipah virus.

However, soon other reports surfaced that she had died of other causes and did not carry the Nipah virus.

But even while the state government has assured that the situation is under control, people in Kozhikode district are taking extra precautions with many people wearing masks outdoors.

Businesses and market places are less crowded while some movie theatres have downed shutters.

Medaram Jathara

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