India reports anthrax outbreak

An anthrax outbreak in the tribal-dominated Kanhamal district of India has infected 15 people, in the Tumudibandh block of the district.

Both the villages of Badagochuka and Sanagochuka have been hit by the outbreak, reports. The initial outbreak was detected nine days ago.

While the symptoms appear to point to anthrax, Kandhamal CDMO Nrusingha Charan Behera told, serological tests are still needed to determine the actual cause of the disease.

Jogendra Behera, the superintendent of the MKCG Medical College and Hospital, told that seven of the affected villagers have been moved to MKCG for treatment. Eight patients have been treated at Tumudibandha. Swabs from the eight patients have been collected and sent to MKCG for testing. Doctors have also collected skin smear and blood samples for the infected for examination.

A panic has reportedly broken out in the Kanhamal district over the anthrax outbreak, but doctors have taken steps to stop the disease's further spread.

The disease is initially believed to have begun in remote villages following the consumption of rotten beef and pork, reports. A Phulbani health team led by the CDMO and a mobile health team from Balliguda immediately went to the villages after the first signs of infection to begin preventative measures. All of the houses in the villages were disinfected with DDT and bleaching powder. Villages were also warned not to eat beef and pork and to stay away from the infected.