‘Only 9 isolated monkey deaths reported in DK’

‘Only 9 isolated monkey deaths reported in DK’

Deputy Commissioner Sasikanth Senthil addresses a press meet in Mangaluru on Wednesday.

Dakshina Kannada district has witnessed only nine isolated cases of monkey deaths, Deputy Commissioner Sasikanth Senthil has said.

Senthil told mediapersons, on Wednesday, the district administration had taken all proactive measures to create awareness on the Kyasanur Forest Disease (KFD), in the view of KFD outbreak in the neighbouring district of Shivamogga.

The viscera of two monkeys found dead at Haleneranki in Koila and Kunkya in Kaniyuru had been sent to Viral Diagnostic Laboratory (VDL) in Shivamogga and Pune and the results are awaited. The autopsy of monkeys found dead in Shanthinagara, Guripalla, Attaje, Nalkurbalanje, Kuntody-Kutrupady and Sharana-Kemral could not be carried out as the carcasses were decomposed.

“The district has not reported any suspected KFD cases so far. The public need not panic,” he said and appealed to the residents living in the fringes of forest to inform the Forest Department and health officials if they come across the carcass of a monkey.

The deputy commissioner said a team led by entomologist had collected three tick pools from Kuntadi, one each from Kannaje, Athaje, and Haleneranki. The samples were sent to Shivamogga to confirm if they were infected with the virus spreading the KFD.

He said if monkeys were infected, they display signs of distress and die in bulk numbers. “Awareness is being created on the fringes of forest and also in areas with a history of the KFD. The villagers residing on the periphery of forests had been asked to avoid venturing into the forest unnecessarily. If they venture into the forest in order to collect firewood or to graze cattle, they should cover their body with clothes and ensure that ticks do not bite them,” he said.

The Department of Health and Family Welfare has received 500 bottles of DMP oil and has  distributed them among Forest Department staff and the residents.

District Health Officer Dr Ramakrishna Rao said the last known KFD case was reported in 2014-15 at Beluvai. All PHCs and hospitals have enough stock of medicines to treat the patients suffering from the KFD symptoms, he added.