Kalpetta: Forest zones still under monkey fever threat
KALPETTA: The health and forest departments have taken steps to prevent the spread of monkey fever ( Kyasannur forest disease) with two confirmed and over 20 suspected cases reported from the settlement areas close to the Karnataka border, including tribal hamlets like Tirunelli.
The two confirmed cases are at Bairakkuppa, a village bordering Karnataka. District medical officer Dr R. Renuka told DC that a campaign was on in the human settlements close to the forests against the disease. "The infected ticks that move out of the bodies of dead monkeys will continue to be in the area and will bite those who roam in the jungle zones allowing the virus to enter the human body," she said. "Both the confirmed patients are convalescing. The suspected patients and their kith and kin are under surveillance of the health team," she added.
Those residing in jungle zones are scared of taking vaccines and hence the health department is distributing repellent lotions and ointments which would keep the ticks away, she said. "Once rain hits the area, the situation will ease," she said.
In 2015, 102 cases were reported from Wayanad and 11 patients died. The first outbreak in the district was in 2013 when only a single case was reported.