A disease known as the West Nile Virus is reported to be found in the Indian state of Kerala. The Indian government is taking measures to manage the further spread of this disease.
West Nile Virus (WNV) is a mosquito-borne disease. Birds are a natural host of this virus. When a mosquito bites an infected bird, the virus gets circulated in the mosquito.
The presence of this virus is most commonly found in the United States. From the year 1999 to 2014, a total of 41,762 cases of West Nile virus disease were reported in the U.S.
The common symptoms of this virus are fever, headache, rash or vomiting. 8 out of 10 infected people do not develop any symptoms. There is no cure or vaccination available for this virus as for now. Climate change may raise the risk of human exposure to West Nile virus.
However, very few cases of this virus are reported in India. Some other cases of WNV were also reported in Kerala in the past. During the year 2011, the presence of WNV has been regularly reported in the state.
Recently a 7-year-old boy from Malappuram District of Kerala was diagnosed with WNV. The Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare is closely observing and monitoring the situation in Kerala.
The authorities have issued a high alert in the region. A close watch is being maintained at the Central and State level. All hospitals have been alerted to make arrangements for safety kits and isolation wards.
The Health Ministry sent a multi-disciplinary Central team from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to Kerala for supporting and helping the State Health Authorities to manage the disease.
As for now, no new cases have been reported for the spread of this virus in other parts of the country.