Kozhikode: Several staffers, including nurses and four doctors, of a hospital in nearby Balussery, have been asked to go on leave from Friday as a precautionary measure after the death of two people being treated for Nipah virus, officials said.
The virus has so far claimed 16 lives in Kerala’s northern districts.
Two people, who succumbed to the virus in the past two days, had undergone treatment at the taluk hospital before being shifted to the Kozhikode Medical College Hospital.
A senior health official said the health staff, including four doctors and nurses, of Balussery hospital who were in contact with the patients, were asked to go on leave for a week as a precautionary measure.
Alternative arrangements have been made for the functioning of the hospital, the official said.
Resin, 25, who died on Thursday, was initially treated at the Balussery hospital when another Nipah affected patient, Nikhil was undergoing treatment.
The official also said there have been enquiries from various institutions, including the local employment exchange, seeking permission to shut office for the time being.
The objective was to avoid crowding of people, the official said.
The report was being finalised, the source added.
As a precautionary measure due to the Nipah virus, schools in Kozhikode and Malappuram districts did not re-open on Friday after summer vacation and would commence their new academic session from 5 June.
Meanwhile, as part of ‘Nipah alert’, state health authorities asked those who visited Kozhikode Medical College casualty, CT scan room and waiting room on 14 May to contact the state Nipah cell immediately.
Those who visited the Balussery Taluk Hospital in the district on 18 May have also been asked to get in touch with Nipah cell, health authorities said.
Besides, officials have asked those people who made contact with the two, who died due to Nipah, to get in touch with the cell.
“The callers’ details will be kept confidential,” the officials added.
So far, a total of 196 samples have been tested for Nipah, of which 18 have tested positive. Sixteen people have died due to the virus.