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West Nile fever in Kerala | Alert in 3 districts amid spike in cases; health dept issues directives

West Nile virus is a mosquito-borne virus that can cause illness in humans and animals. It is primarily transmitted through the bite of infected mosquitoes

Written by  Shefali Kohli -- May 08th 2024 01:51 PM -- Updated: May 08th 2024 01:58 PM
West Nile fever in Kerala | Alert in 3 districts amid spike in cases; health dept issues directives

West Nile fever in Kerala | Alert in 3 districts amid spike in cases; health dept issues directives

West Nile fever in Kerala | Kerala, renowned for its tranquil backwaters and verdant landscapes, has recently made headlines for a concerning development - the emergence of West Nile Fever. The state has recorded multiple cases of this mosquito-borne viral illness, sparking tension and scare.

In the wake of West Nile fever reported in three districts of Kerala--Malappuram, Kozhikode and Thrissur, the State Health Department has issued an alert and instructed the authorities to ramp up pre-monsoon cleaning activities.


In a high-level meeting of the health department held last week, State Health Minister Veena George instructed to intensify pre-monsoon cleaning activities. The District Medical Officers have also been instructed to intensify the activities.

In addition to these actions, the health department received directives to collaborate closely with district administrations and local self-government bodies for coordinated efforts. The District Vector Control Unit was tasked with collecting samples from various locations for testing and intensifying awareness campaigns.


Given that West Nile Fever has been documented in several districts of the state since 2011, there is no cause for alarm. Nonetheless, the health minister emphasized the importance of prompt treatment for anyone experiencing fever or related symptoms.

All you need to know about West Nile Virus

  • West Nile Virus, which is commonly found in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, North America and West Asia, was first isolated in a woman in the West Nile district of Uganda in 1937. 
  • It was identified in birds (crows and Columbiformes) in the Nile Delta region in 1953, according to the World Health Organisation.
  •  Symptoms include fever, headache, tiredness, and body aches, nausea, vomiting, high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, and paralysis, 
  •  Preventive measures to reduce the risk of West Nile virus infection include avoiding mosquito bites by using insect repellents, wearing protective clothing, and eliminating mosquito breeding sites by reducing standing water around homes and communities.


- With inputs from agencies

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