April 15, 2024, 3:06 pm

Staff Correspondent

2023-12-11 12:27:18 BdST

Nipah outbreak claims 10 lives, highest in 7 yrs

At least 10 people have died of the Nipah virus in Bangladesh this year, the highest death toll from this deadly viral disease in the last seven years.

At the same time, 14 individuals were infected with the disease, indicating a fatality rate of more than 70%.

The information was revealed during a seminar at the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) on Sunday.

IEDCR Director Prof Dr Tahmina Shirin said the disease has been detected in the country’s seven districts this year. The districts are Rajshahi, Naogaon, Rajbari, Shariatpur, Pabna, Natore and Narsingdi.

“As per our surveillance report, the bat is the prime career of Nipah virus in Bangladesh. After drinking raw plum date juice, a human can get infected with the virus,” the IEDCR director said, adding that in contact with a patient, anybody can catch this viral disease.

Tahmina Shirin further said Nipah disease is now a pandemic potential disease in Bangladesh.

“The online sale of raw plum date could spread the virus fast from one area to another. We must stop drinking raw date sap,” this public health expert said.

As per the IEDCR data, as many as 339 Nipah patients were detected in Bangladesh, with 240 of them dying since its outbreak in the country in 2004.

Speaking at the seminar, National Institute of Preventive and Social Medicine (NIPSOM) Director Prof Dr Meerjadey Sebrina Flora said there is no alternative but to prevent this disease as the fatality rate of the disease is very high.

All festivals related to drinking raw plum date sap must be forbidden in the country to save people from the death of this viral disease.

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