10 new facilities to diagnose Zika virus to go live by Feb-end

10 new facilities to diagnose Zika virus to go live by Feb-end

Stepping up action against Zika virus, Health Ministry today said ten new diagnostic facilities will become operational in different states by the end of this month.

"In addition to the two diagnostic facilities at NCDC and National Institute of Virology (NIV) Pune, ten new facilities will become operational by end of February. These are located in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Puducherry, Karnataka, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and Assam," the ministry said in an official statement.

The matter was discussed in a high-level meeting held today to review the preparedness against the virus which was attended by senior ministry officials and those related to health bodies.

Officials said signages informing about Zika virus were being placed at 18 international airports. Informative pamphlets have also been prepared for immigrating passengers.

"All aircraft are being disinfected as per the WHO guidelines. In addition, vector breeding in containers at the seaports is also being taken up and National Vector Borne Diseases Control Programme and National Centre for Disease Control are checking for control of vector densities," it said.

Surveillance activities have been activated through the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) network along with Rapid Response Teams in states.

"Instructions and guidelines have been issued and the members have been oriented towards Zika. A video conference has also been conducted with the states for disseminating the guidelines to them," it said.

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