Stalking new victims

AFTER malaria, it is the turn of Japanese encephalitis. Alapuzha and Kottayam districts of Kerala are in severe grip of encephalitis where it has already claimed 3G lives. Though the situation is serious, the local doctors have failed to tackle it.

The virus which- spreads through mosquitoes, can be eliminated only by the body's immune system. A person suffers from high fever, convulsions and coma after being bitten by an infected mosquito. The survival rate of patients in traditionally prone areas is nine out of 10, whereas, in new areas, only five out of 10 are known to survive. India is yet to test a vaccine which is believed to be effective. The disease first broke out in epidemic proportions in parts of north and central India in the '90s.

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