Owing to the Nipah virus scare, schools in the northern districts of Kozhikode and Malappuram would re-open only on June 5.
Anxious moments were witnessed on Saturday morning when it was wrongly reported that a 38-year-old woman had died in Kannur district due to the Nipah virus.
"Till such time the report from the NIV in Pune is received it can not be confirmed whether it was a case of Nipah virus or not", the spokesman said.
While the World Health Organisation (WHO) on Friday had released data that suggests the Nipah virus has so far claimed that the virus has so far claimed 16 lives and as many as 753 suspected cases are under observation after experiencing similar symptoms. Majority of the cases were found to be having contact with cases of Nipah virus disease. "Things are in control, but we have to be very careful", said Shailaja.
"We had indicated at the outset itself, there could be a possible second outbreak and the vulnerable are those who would have in come in contact with the affected".
The Kerala government on Saturday made a decision to postpone the re-opening of educational institutions in Kozhikode district to June 12, besides deferring all examinations, except those conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
Earlier the schools in both districts were scheduled to reopen on June 6.
As part of "Nipah alert", those who visited Kozhikode Medical College casualty, CT scan room and waiting room on May 14 and the Balussery Taluk Hospital on May 18 have been asked to contact the Nipah cell immediately. To find out the source of the virus, a number of samples from a particular variety of bats were taken, but they turned out to be negative.
Last week, the Kerala government issued a health advisory for people traveling to the affected districts.
The team concerned at the MoPH will receive related reports round-the-clock on its hotlines: 66740948 and 66740951. "The Nipah virus, which was first identified in 1999 after an outbreak in Malaysia and Singapore is thought to be transmitted by bats, pigs or other animals to humans", the advisory states.