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What is the Nipah virus and why is it more deadly than COVID-19?

nipah

Officials in India are racing to contain a virus outbreak that has claimed the life of a 12-year-old boy and is deadlier than COVID-19 — the Nipah virus.

CBS News reports the boy was taken to the hospital last week in the southern Kerala state with a high-grade fever and suspected brain inflammation. After blood tests, he was diagnosed with the Nipah virus and died Sunday.

Officials are using contact tracing, quarantine and hospitalization on the 188 people who have came into contact with the preteen to prevent a wide-spread outbreak, CBS reported.

“This is one of those viruses we really need to pay attention to,” John Lednicky, a research professor at the University of Florida’s Environmental and Global Health department, told USA TODAY.

The reemergence of the Nipah virus is compacting a problem in the nation already grappling with the effects of COVID-19, with over 30,000 new COVID cases reported on Monday.