Mains Paper 2: Governance | Issues relating to development & management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources
From the UPSC perspective, the following things are important:
Prelims level: WNV & associated facts
Mains level: Preventing WNV spread in India
- Centre has sent a special medical team to Malappuram district of Kerala from where a confirmed case of West Nile Virus (WNV) fever, a mosquito-borne disease was reported.
West Nile Virus
- As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), the West Nile Virus (WNV) is a member of the flavivirus genus and belongs to the family Flaviviridae.
- Birds are the natural hosts of this virus.
- But it spreads to human by Culex mosquitoes.
- Mosquitoes become infected when they feed on infected birds.
- Once a person gets infected, the virus multiplies thereby causing illness.
- Infection usually presents as a mild, non-fatal dengue like illness in humans.
- The symptoms include fever, headache, tiredness, body aches, nausea, vomiting, occasionally with skin rash and swollen lymph glands.
- A blood test report can only confirm if a person has been infected with it or not.
- A very small proportion of infection transmission occurred through organ transplant, blood transfusions and breast milk.
- Fortunately, there has been no human-to-human transmission of WNV through casual contact so far.
- There is no definite treatment of the disease.
- Prevention by the disease can be done by preventing mosquito bite, using repellents and wearing full sleeves.
- It is diagnosed with the blood igm levels and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR).
- There is no vaccination or specific treatment available for the virus but medical practitioners advice that it is important to recognize the disease and manage the symptoms.