15 confirmed Zika virus cases in Kerala: Tamil Nadu, Karnataka intensify measures
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the Zika cases are not unexpected as the same Aedes Aegypte that causes dengue and chikungunya is responsible for Zika.
The total number of persons infected with the Zika virus in Kerala has gone up to 15, with the state health ministry confirming one more case on Saturday. The samples of a 40-year-old man from Nanthancode which was sent to the National Institute of Alappuzha has been found to be positive. Neighbouring Tamil Nadu and Karnataka have upped the guard, though Zika can mostly spread from one person to another through a mosquito bite.
Tamil Nadu's Coimbatore administration has intensified vehicle checks on the Tamil Nadu-Kerala border, where e-passes were already mandatory.
Karnataka's health department has asked officials to intensify vector control measures and identified Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Chamarajanagara as districts that need to be more vigilant. "In view of reporting of Zika Virus Disease (ZVD) in the neighbouring state of Kerala, it is crucial to intensify the vector control measures in Karnataka also. The current monsoon season supports the widespread proliferation of Aedes mosquito, which is a vector for Zika Virus Disease," a circular by the Commissionerate of Health and Family Welfare Services said.
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the Zika cases are not unexpected as it is the same Aedes Aegypte that causes dengue and chikungunya are responsible for Zika.
Aedes aegypti is prevalent in Karnataka as well and that is why routine surveillance has to be intensified, the Karnataka government has said.
Pregnant woman first case in Kerala
The first case of Zika was reported in Kerala on Thursday. That the number has now risen to 15 shows that the virus has somewhat spread in the state. The 24-year-old woman was admitted to the hospital with fever, headache and red spots on June 28. As her sample was sent for examination, Zika was confirmed, On July 7, the woman gave birth normally. She did not travel outside the state but went to meet her mother who stays near the Kerala-Tamil Nadu border. Her mother too had similar symptoms.