The 23-year-old Ernakulam resident who has been diagnosed with Nipah has been moved out of the Intestive Care Unit (ICU), the Kerala Health Department said in a statement on Saturday. The young man has been moved to a hospital room after his health improved.
The engineering student, who had tested positive for Nipah on June 5, has been receiving treatment for the virus at a private hospital in Kochi and his condition has been gradually improving. In the past few days, officials had stated that he regained consciousness, he was able to walk and was able to remember things.
The latest test conducted by the hospital showed the presence of the Nipah virus in one of the three samples that were tested. The hospital shifting the patient from the ICU to a hospital room is an indication that his condition has improved further.
The Nipah virus was first reported in Kerala in May 2018. It had then claimed the lives of 17 people, including with three people of the same family from Perambra in Kozhikode. When a second Nipah outbreak was reported earlier this month, the state machinery was prepared and seems to have contained it to a single person who was affected. Nobody apart from the 23-year-old has been infected by Nipah till now.
The people who were in contact with the 23-year-old man were kept in isolation wards at Kalamassery Medical College in Kochi after exhibiting fever and it was found that they had not been infected. By now, all of them have been discharged from the isolation ward.
A total of 278 persons are now in the observation list, which includes people who were in direct or indirect contact with the patient. Though initially about 318 persons were included in the list and kept at home under quarantine, many were relieved after their incubation period got over.
Meanwhile, Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja told the media on Saturday that source of the Nipah outbreak will be found very soon. Samples of about 141 fruit bats, collected from Vavakkad and Thuruthipuram – which is located near the patient’s home town – and from Thodupuzha in Idukki district, where he had been staying while studying, are being tested.