5 kids from one Kerala school test positive for H1N1, 67 quarantined
Five students of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, residential school in Kasargode district of Kerala, have been affected by the H1N1 virus. The students are being provided treatment inside the school to limit the transmission of the virus. The district health authorities have also started treatment for 67 other students at the school who are suspected to have H1N1 influenza symptoms.
This is the first reported case of H1NI in the state in the year. The condition of none of the students is serious, district authorities said.
The district health authorities had started following precautionary measures and sent samples of five students to National Institute of Virology in Mangaluru after they suspected the presence of the virus at the school, as students were affected with fever and cold a few days ago.
“We have screened all 67 students and have begun taking precautionary measures. We got the result of the first sample on Friday. The other students have also been given medicine on the assumption that they are also infected, it is empirical to do so; all the students have had fever and cold. It is not possible to send samples of all students to a lab since no lab is equipped to conduct examination simultaneously on such a huge number of samples. Only limited samples can be sent to a lab at a time. Also we can’t wait for the result of all the samples to come to start treatment as it is a time consuming procedure. We have started giving medicines for all students – it is the normal medicine given for cold and fever,” Dr Ramdas AV, District Medical Officer Kasargode told TNM.
Though parents of some of the students panicked on hearing the news as they were not allowed to visit the students, the health authorities were able to pacify them and convince them on the need for treatment in an isolated place. A team of doctors from the district have been managing the situation. No case has been reported from among the teachers of the school.
“There is nothing to panic about. The students are under observation. We have asked the parents not to come to visit the children as we don’t want the virus to be transmitted. As of now there is no need for a special team, we the team of doctors from the district are handling it. Last year during the same time, a similar incident occurred at College of Agriculture Kasargode; some ten to 20 students were affected with the influenza. At that time, too, we provided treatment at the campus itself by isolating them,” the DMO added.