Antiviral against Nipah has arrived in Kerala: Govt

Healthcare worker at virus testing facility. [FPK File Photo]

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government on Thursday said the monoclonal antibody required for treatment of those infected by the Nipah virus has arrived in the state.

Quoting state Health Minister Veena George, PTI report said a meeting was held between the Principal Secretary of the Health Department and the Health Ministry of India earlier in the day and now the monoclonal antibody has arrived.

She told reporters that the stability of the medicine, which is not clinically proven yet but is the only available antiviral treatment for Nipah virus infection, was discussed with a central expert committee.

“Further steps or course of action would be decided by the expert committee,” she said.

Earlier in the day, in the state Assembly, the Minister said there was no need to be apprehensive about the Nipah outbreak in Kozhikode district, but caution needs to be exercised by people as they go about their daily activities.

“There is no need for any apprehension. We can all together deal with the issue with caution,” she said in a statement in the Assembly.

The brain-damaging virus has killed two people and infected three others in Kozhikode district.

On Wednesday, a 24-year old health worker became Kerala’s fifth confirmed Nipah case since its recent outbreak.

Of the three infected persons under treatment, the condition of a nine-year-old boy continues to remain critical.

Following the outbreak, all educational institutions in Kozhikode district were closed on Thursday and Friday.

Kozhikode District Collector A Geetha announced this in a Facebook post and said educational institutions can arrange online classes on the two days for students.

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