With Maharashtra reported its first case of Zika virus infection, the central government on Monday sent a high-level team to the state to support the authorities to draw an action plan to control the further spread of the disease.
On July 31, Maharashtra had reported the first case in a resident of Purandar district in rural Pune. The 50-year-old woman had been admitted to Belsar primary health center in Purandar and has now recovered and been sent home. She was also infected by Chickungunya.
None of her family members have contracted the infection. Based on suspicion, five samples had been sent for testing, out of which one was found positive for Zika.
The Maharashtra quick response team visited the area on Saturday and met the sarpanch and gram panchayat members and instructed them about preventive measures as several fever cases were reported this month. The team has also put in place a stringent protocol to tackle it.
Until now, 63 cases of Zika virus were reported in Kerala.
Zika virus is transmitted mostly by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, mainly Aedes aegypti. The infection is mostly found in the tropical and subtropical regions. The Aedes mosquito is known to usually bite during the day, especially during the early morning and evening. Dengue, chikungunya, and yellow fever are all spread by the same mosquito.
The symptoms of Zika are similar to dengue including fever, skin rashes and joint pain. In the vast majority of cases, there are no symptoms. Zika can cause paralysis (Guillain-Barré Syndrome) in some people. It has the potential to cause birth abnormalities in pregnant women.