Kerala: 9 die due to high fever, 2 affected with Nipah virus

Kozhikode (Kerala) [India], May 21 : At least nine people have died in Kerala's Calicut district due to high fever. The health department of the state has confirmed that two out of the nine deceased were affected with the rare Nipah virus. The health department has, however, not confirmed the cause of the death of the other seven patients and sent their samples for tests. A task force has also been formed to probe the matter. "The samples of the other deceased have been sent for tests to virology institute Manipal. A task force has been formed under District Collector U V Jose for further probe on it," an official from the health department said. Meanwhile, the health department conducted emergency meetings in Kozhikode today under Minister of Health and Family Welfare JP Nadda along with Secretary Health over the deaths. Nipah virus is spread by fruit bats and causes severe disease in both animals and humans. The virus can be transferred from a human through close contact, body fluids, saliva and cough. Nadda yesterday instructed the Director of National Centre for Disease Control to visit the district and initiate required steps as warranted by the protocol in consultation with the state government. Earlier, three people reportedly died in Kozhikode district of Kerala due to Nipah virus
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