Nipah virus alert sounded in Himachal after 18 bats found dead in Nahan school

The Burma Papri School at Nahan in Sirmaur district where 18 bats were found dead.

The Hush Post: After the nipah virus claimed 12 lives in Kerala, a medical alert has been sounded in Himachal Pradesh by the Health Department after 18 bats were found dead in a school at Nahan in Sirmaur disrict of Himachal Pradesh. This was announced by Health Minister Vipin Parmar.
A task force would be constituted to keep a track of any kind of medical update on the nipah virus. All CMOs across the state have been asked to be ready with preventive measures. A keen eye would be kept on all tourists entering the state who could serve as carriers of the disease.
Panic spreads in Himachal Pradesh’s Nahan district where 18 dead bats were found dead in a government school as the reason behind nipah virus is said to be bats. Officers of the Health Department, Animal Husbandry Department and Forest Department took samples from the dead bats, which were found from Burma Papri School, Nahan, for further investigation.
The district Chief Medical Officer, Dr Sanjay Sharma, said that though bats are present in the area every year, this year their number was significantly higher.
The nipah virus infection causes severe diseases in both animals and humans. The natural hosts of the virus are fruit bats.These bats don’t bite people or even come into contact with people. Instead, the problem comes when people and livestock share fruit with bats. Bats shed the virus in their excrement and secretions on plants like dates.
Symptoms: Infection with Nipah virus is associated with encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). After exposure and an incubation period of 5 to 14 days, illness presents with 3-14 days of fever and headache, followed by drowsiness, disorientation and mental confusion. These signs and symptoms can progress to coma within 24-48 hours. Some patients have a respiratory illness during the early part of their infections, and some show severe neurological signs and some pulmonary signs.


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