Published on: December 6, 2022

Japanese encephalitis

Japanese encephalitis

Why in news?

Around 48 lakh children, between the age group of 1 and 15 years, in the State will receive the Japanese Encephalitis vaccine in a special vaccination drive which will start from December.


  • While a total of 68,000 cases of Japanese Encephalitis are reported in the country every year, around 20-30% patients die because of the disease.
  • Among cured, 30% to 50% of people end up with sensory and motor weakness, and other permanent physical and mental disabilities
  • The children will be vaccinated free of cost by the Union government.
  • Primary Focus : Private and government schools followed by health institutions, Anganwadi centres and among communities.
  • Endemic districts: Ballari, Raichur, Koppal, Vijayapura, Chikkaballapur, Kolar, Mandya, Dharwad, Chitradurga and Davangere districts
  • Additional Japanese Encephalitis campaign : Bagalkot, Dakshina Kannada, Gadag, Hassan, Haveri, Kalaburgi, Tumakuru, Ramanagar, Udupi and Yadgir districts during the non-transmission period.

About Japanese Encephalitis

  • Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) is a flavivirus related to dengue, yellow fever and West Nile viruses, and is spread by mosquitoes.
  • It is an infection of the brain caused by the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV).
  • Most infections result in little or no symptoms, occasional inflammation of the brain occurs.
  • Symptoms : Headache, vomiting, fever, confusion and seizures(5 to 15 days after infection)
  • Spread by mosquitoes, specifically those of the Culex type
  • Reservoir for the virus: Pigs and wild birds
  • Treatment involves supportive care.
  • A vaccine is available.
  • 24 countries in the WHO South-East Asia and Western Pacific regions have endemic JEV transmission

Japanese Encephalitis in India

  • The first case of JE : Vellore, Tamil Nadu.
  • The first major JE outbreak : Burdwan district of West Bengal and another major outbreak was reported in Uttar Pradesh
  • The first case of JE was reported in Karnataka from Kolar district in 1978.
  • A vast majority of cases occur in children less than 15 years of age.