The Deputy Director for Public Health at the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. John Otoo, has urged residents of Nsawam Adoagyiri to be on the look out for persons who will exhibit the Avian Influenza symptoms which has been detected in the Municipality.
Speaking on the outbreak and the measures the health directorate is taking in that regard, he averred that they have deployed health officials together with veterinary officers to ensure that the situation comes under control.
The Deputy Director also disclosed that a lot of education has been embarked on and surveillance exercise have also been mounted by health personnel in the area to urge residents to ensure safety due to the infectious nature of the virus.
“We are notifying all persons to be aware that we have Avian Influenza virus around and it’s one infection that is very contagious and can be fatal because it has respiratory signs and symptoms that is cough, fever and when it gets serious, you can have difficulty in breathing and then face consequences”.Dr. John Otoo
Dr. Otoo advised that anyone who starts exhibiting any of these symptoms and has contact with any person who works in a poultry farm or have made contact with any poultry product that is not well cooked, is encouraged to immediately report to any available health facility nearby.
This comes after reports indicate that two farmers have been infected and the infected farms currently have been taken over by the Veterinary Service to ensure that everything is put in place and under control so that the disease does not spread to other areas within the community.
According to Dr. Otoo, the two infected farm workers are currently under quarantine and will inform the media and the general public how the situation is when everything is over.
Reports also indicate that the name of the farm cannot be disclosed because of security reasons and also to prevent fold up of the business of these farms since customer may withdraw from patronizing their services due to the reported infection.
GHS on Avian Influenza Outbreak
Prior to this development, the Ghana Health Service (GHS) in the Eastern Region cautioned people with acute lower respiratory illness, with fever and shortness of breath to visit health facilities for Avian Influenza test. The directive immediately followed the announcement that there had been an outbreak of the Avian Influenza disease in the Nsawam Adoagyiri Municipality.
According to the release, the birds on the two farms on which the infections were detected have been destroyed and preliminary disinfection initiated. The GHS said the disease was highly infectious and urged the public to avoid contact with persons suspected or confirmed to be infected. It also warned against the consumption of raw or undercooked poultry products in the areas where Avian Influenza infections in animals or humans had been suspected or confirmed last month.
The release indicated all suspected cases should be reported, managed in isolation, contacts traced, and samples taken for confirmation.