India’s first monkeypox death in Kerala

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India confirmed its first death caused by monkeypox in the southern State of Kerala, yesterday (1).

A 22-year-old Gulf returnee, who died in a private hospital in Thrissur on Saturday (30), was tested positive for monkeypox in UAE.

Relatives of the youth from Kurinjiyur, near Chavakkad, had allegedly handed over the reports to the hospital authorities only after his death.

The youth, who returned from UAE on 21 July, was admitted to the hospital only on 27 July with acute fatigue and meningitis, according to the hospital authorities. However, it was reported that he was not exhibiting any visible symptoms of monkeypox.

Results of the laboratory tests of his body fluids from Alappuzha virology lab are yet to come.

A high-level team will investigate the case, according to Health Minister Veena George. As death due to monkeypox was rare, that too of a 22-year-old youth, detailed investigation had to be done in the case, she said. It should be investigated why there was a delay in seeking treatment for the youth even though he arrived on July 21.

The Health department has intensified the preventive measures at Kuranjiyur and surrounding areas. A route map of the youth has already been prepared. Those who travelled along with him in the flight from UAE, the taxi driver who took him from the airport, his relatives, neighbours, and doctors and health workers who treated were asked to go on quarantine.

The health team is monitoring the situation. The Health department is convening a meeting at Punnayur soon.

(The Hindu)