THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: At least 12 people have lost their lives to Leptospirosis, commonly called 'rat fever' after the outbreak of water-borne diseases in Kerala. Around 372 confirmed cases of Leptospirosis have been reported since August 1.
Three people died due to rat fever on Sunday alone, said health officials.
The state government has issued an alert and asked the people to stay extra vigilant.
The last five days saw an influx of reported cases in Leptospirosis after 350 people with suspected symptoms took treatment in different parts of the state out of which 150 tested positive.
Most cases of Leptospirosis were reported from Kozhikode and Malappuram districts.
Leptospirosis is a disease caused by Leptospira bacteria, symptoms of which are headache, muscle pain, fever etc. It is often transmitted by rodents or contaminated water and soil coming into contact with breaks in the skin, eyes, mouth and nose.
The outbreak of waterborne diseases comes after the state witnessed the worst ever floods in over a century, affecting nearly 55 lakh people.
Health Minister KK Shailaja said that people who came in contact with flood water should maintain extra vigil.
Those engaged in cleaning operations should take the prescribed dose of Doxycyclin, she said adding people should not go for self-medication if they catch a fever.
Enough stock of the medicine was available in all health centres and government hospitals in the state, she added.
Kerala is still recovering from the havoc created by floods and the government has asked people of the state to maintain their calm.
Rescue and relief efforts are still on in Kerala with flood water slowly receding from various places.
As many as 483 people have lost lives in the state since the onset of the monsoon on May 28 and 14 were still missing.