After the 2018 Nipah virus scare from Kerala, Karnataka is taking no chances following the death of a six-year-old from the rare West Nile Fever in Malappuram district in the neighbouring state. The Karnataka health department has put the districts which share borders with Kerala on high alert.
The West Nile virus is transmitted to humans via mosquito bites. The mosquitoes get the virus through infected birds. The department has issued a circular to district health officials across the state.
Dr S Sajjan Shetty, joint director, National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme, state health and family welfare department, told DH, “On Wednesday, we alerted the border districts of Mysuru, Chamarajanagar, Kodagu and Dakshina Kannada. I have asked them to strengthen the Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) surveillance.”
“There is no need to panic as the chances of the virus leading to severe conditions are remote. A drive against mosquitoes and migratory birds, the major carriers of the virus, will be carried out,” he said.
In January 2018, a suspected case of West Nile Fever was reported from Dakshina Kannada district. Later, the patient recovered and was discharged.