Anyone heading off to Bali for a warm getaway can expect to be screened on arrival and departure after cases of the Nipah virus were detected in India.

Nipah virus can lead to “acute respiratory infection and fatal encephalitis”, according to the World Health Organisation, which estimates 40 to 75 per cent of cases are fatal.

There is currently no known medicine or vaccine available to treat the illness, which can be transmitted from human to human.

Indonesian authorities have directed Balinese officials to spring in to action, as India is only behind Australia in terms of total visitor numbers to the holiday island.

Five cases have been detected in the southern Indian state of Kerala, with two of those proving fatal.

Head of the Bali Provincial Health Office I Nyoman Gede Anom has told local news outlet Republika that airports, including Denpasar, will be using temperature scanning devices.

“If a tourist is found to have a body temperature above normal, it will prompt further inquiry,” Mr Anom said.

He confirmed there have been no cases detected in Bali, but said a team of neuroscience specialists was being assembled just in case.

“We must maintain vigilance due to the incubation period, which may mean a lack of fever upon arrival at the airport,” he said.

First detected in 1999, few studies have been conducted on Nipah virus.

Outbreaks in South East Asia have been linked to human contact with the secretions of infected pigs, or eating fruit which has come into contact with fluids of infected fruit bats.


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By Rahul

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