Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

Monitoring of Nipah Virus infection

Posted On: 21 JUN 2019 3:01PM by PIB Delhi

During the 2018 Nipah virus outbreak in Kerala, 52 Pteropus giganteus bats were collected and a total of 10 samples (nineteen per cent) of the bats were found positive for Nipah virus by “Real Time qRT-PCR” lab testing technique.


For early detection, monitoring and response to epidemic prone diseases (including Nipah virus disease) outbreaks, Government of India is doing surveillance through the Integrated Disease Surveillance Program (IDSP) and providing technical and financial support to all States under the National Health Mission (NHM).


As per information received from Ministry of External Affairs, no screening for Nipah Virus is required for issuance of Indian visas persons coming from Bangladesh and Malaysia.


Immediately after the outbreak of Nipah virus disease was reported from Kerala in the first week of June 2019, the Union Health & Family Welfare Minister took a review meeting and a Multi-disciplinary Central team consisting of experts from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) was deployed in the affected district to assist and guide the State health authorities. The team is supporting the State in investigations, contact tracing, sample testing and management of the Nipah Virus Disease (NiVD).


Point of Care Test facility has been established by the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune at Medical College Ernakulum. Experts from National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD), Bhopal were also involved with the local Animal Husbandry Department in investigation.


NIV, Pune deputed special teams to collect samples from Pteropus or fruit bats, which are the main reservoir of Nipah virus disease. Out of 36 Pteropus species bats tested for Nipah, 12 (33%) were found to be positive for “anti Nipah bat IgG antibodies”. Strategic Health Operation Centre (SHOC) at NCDC has been activated since 4th June, 2019 and is coordinating with field teams on surveillance and response activities for Nipah containment. A dedicated phone-line has been established at SHOC to answer queries of general public. Further, specific case definition, contact tracing and treatment & clinical management protocol have been provided to State authorities of Kerala.

The Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), Sh Ashwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the Lok Sabha here today.





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