Extending a helping hand to the family of nurse Lini Puthussery, who died after contracting Nipah from her patients, the Kerala government on Wednesday chose to give a government job to her husband and Rs 10 lakh each to two of their children. In the past two decades India has seen two previous outbreaks of Nipah viral infection (2001 in Siliguri in West Bengal & 2007 in Nadia in West Bengal).
NiV is also capable of causing disease in pigs and other domestic animals.
The death toll from the latest outbreak in Kerala rose to 12 on Thursday, following the death of a 61-year-old man who had already lost three members of his family, including his two sons, to the virus. He came back after Lini got infected with Nipah virus.
The Commerce Ministry has said it is monitoring the outbreak and will asses if the virus will bear implications for the country's fruit exports.
Today the death toll of the virus - which has no vaccine - rose to 11, with nearly 100 people being treated as potential cases. The mortality rate is noted at 40 per cent, but can spike to 80 per cent in case of improper care and diagnosis. So far, it is believed that the two known strains of Nipah virus are both not easily transmitted.
According to Agricultural & Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), in 2016-17, India exported fruits worth of Rs 4,448.08 crore, out of which mangoes, walnuts, grapes, bananas and pomegranates accounted for most of it.More news: 11 people killed and 25 hospitalized due to deadly Nipah virus
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Can the Nipah virus spread from one person to another?
In Bangladesh in 2004, humans became infected with NiV as a result of consuming date palm sap that had been contaminated by infected fruit bats. An expert team from the National Centre for Disease Control, including its director Dr Sujeet Kumar Singh and head of epidemiology Dr S.K. Jain, and a high-level team from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences are camping in Kerala to take stock of the situation.
Treatment options are limited mostly to supportive care.
Symptoms of the infection, which was first identified in 1999, include headaches, fever, respiratory illness and drowsiness.
Residents in the vicinity said there was very little or no quarantine treatment for those who had close contact with the affected ones.
Nipah virus is a rather lethal disease.