Saturday, Oct 01, 2022

Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai Calls 'Important Meet' To Review Monkeypox Situation After Death In Kerala

A 22-year-old man suspected to have Monkeypox died in Kerala on Saturday. PTI reports that his Monkeypox test results have come as positive.

Monkeypox Virus Outbreak Photo: AP/Ajit Solanki

Following the news of positive test result of the suspected Monkeypox patient who died in Kerala, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Monday said that he has called an "important meeting" to review the Monkeypox situation in the state. 

The meeting on Tuesday would include Karnataka's Health Minister Sudhakar K and health department officials and would concern control measures and treatment facility to be put in place.

Official sources in New Delhi said that samples of a 22-year old man who, who died in Kerala last week, have come out positive for Monkeypox on Monday. Sources also told PTI that relatives of the deceased were informed on July 30 —the same day the patient died— that his samples taken in UAE had also tested positive. This would be the first Monkeypox-related death in India.

Bommai also indicated that the government is likely to issue certain directions following the meeting.

"We have taken Monkeypox seriously. Tomorrow I have called an important meeting with the Health Minister and Health Department officials to discuss how to check the travellers, setting up labs and other measures that need to be taken," said Bommai on Monday.

Speaking to reporters, Bommai further said that the meeting will decide on the measures that need to be taken and directions need to be issued to control the spread of Monkeypox. It would also involve measures regarding the required treatment and arrangement for medicines.

The 22-year-old man who recently returned from UAE had allegedly died due to monkeypox on Saturday in Kerala.

Karnataka Health Minister Sudhakar K on Sunday had said that the Ethiopian national, who was suspected to have a Monkeypox case in Bengaluru has turned out to be a case of chickenpox. He had added that all travellers from affected countries are being screened on arrival into the state.

The Karnataka government had recently decided to speed up surveillance activities and keep a strong vigil in the state. It has instructed officials in all the districts in the state to ensure effective preparedness and take required action as per the Centre's guidelines and Technical Advisory Committee recommendations regarding Monkeypox.

There are four confirmed cases of Monkeypox so far in India. It is a rare viral disease caused by the Monkeypox virus. It's characterised mainly by fever and rashes. Healthline lists the following symptoms that appear within 5-21 days of contracting the virus:

  • fever, which is commonly the first symptom
  • headache
  • muscle aches
  • back ache
  • fatigue
  • chills
  • swollen lymph nodes

It adds that rashes develop within one to three days after fever. 

Monkeypox spreads through direct contact with infected animals and humans through blood, bodily fluids, skin or mucous lesions, and respiratory droplets.

While the first three Indian Monkeypox patients had travel history to affected countries, the fourth patient from Delhi had no such foreign travel history.

(With PTI inputs)