Nipah Virus alert: Health Minister confirms Kerala youth tested positive for Nipah


New Delhi, This comes as alarming news and the worst fears have come true as the Kerala youth tests positive for Nipah. Kerala Health Minister K.K.Shailaja on Tuesday confirmed that the youth being treated near Kochi has tested positive for Nipah virus (NiV). The test was confirmed by the Pune based National Institute of Virology.She also assured that elaborate arrangements have been made to tackle the emergency and there was no need for panic.

The state that witnesses 12 deaths to NiV, with 22 positive cases reported from Kozhikode and Malappuram districts last year in May, was waiting for the blood reports of youth since Monday. The Ernakulam health authorities said the youth was being treated at a private hospital near Kochi.

The student has been admitted to a private hospital. Earlier, blood samples examined at two virology institutes — Manipal Institute of Virology and Kerala Institute of Virology and Infectious Diseases — had indicated Nipah.

Sixteen persons lost their lives to the Nipah virus in Kerala last year. The natural host of the virus is believed to be fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family, Pteropus genus.