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UAE asks residents to avoid unnecessary trips to Nipah virus hit Kerala

Ministry of Health and Prevention issues alert about possibility of contracting fatal infection

Animal Husbandry department and forest officials collect bats from a well of a house after the outbreak of ‘Nipah’ virus, near Perambra in Kozhikode on Monday.

Dubai: The UAE on Thursday asked travellers to postpone unnecessary trips to Kerala till the Nipah virus outbreak in the south Indian state becomes under control.

In a media statement issued around 3pm on Thursday, the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) alerted people travelling to Kerala to be aware of the possibility of contracting the infection and advised them to postpone unnecessary travel till the situation will be controlled.

The statement comes amidst reports that the fatal virus has claimed one more life, raising the death toll in the state to 12 on Thursday.

The ministry said it is closely monitoring the situation and is working with its strategic partners to assess the risk of the importation of Nipah virus (also referred to as NiV) cases to the country and put the necessary control measures.

Also, MOHAP is working in in continuous coordination with the World Health Organization (WHO) to implement the global recommendations, it added.

On Wednesday, the UAE had urged its citizens in India to exercise caution and abide by the instructions of Indian authorities following the outbreak of the Nipah virus in Kerala.

The UAE Consulate in Kerala urged Emiratis to register with the Twajudi service, and to contact consulate in the case of an emergency on 00919087777737 or on 80044444.

The Kerala state government on Wednesday also asked travellers to avoid visiting four northern districts of the state.

An advisory issued by state health secretary Rajeev Sadanandan stated that travelling to any part of Kerala was safe.

But if travellers wished to be extra cautious, they could avoid the four districts Kozhikode, Malappuram, Wayanad and Kannur, it said.

“A few cases of infection by nipah virus have been reported from Kozhikode district in Kerala. The infection remains highly localised, all cases being linked to one family,” the advisory said.

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