CONTROL AND PREVENTION OF ZOONOTIC INFECTIONS

David Stobbe / StobbePhoto.ca
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Zoonotic infections are a menace to human health and they are of global public health concern. The best method of controlling any form of zoonoses is by preventing them before they happen. Simple personal hygiene measures by the human population can help go a long way in alleviating a variety of zoonoses. The increase in human population, rising need for animal protein, unprecedented wildfires and the conversion of forest areas to industrial and residential areas are among the many factors that help zoonotic infections to continue to emerge and spread in the human population. Because zoonoses affect both animals and humans, a clear-cut holistic veterinary and medical science is required to contain them. The specific ways of controlling zoonotic infections are as follows:

  1. Washing hands regularly with soap after touching, feeding and breast-milking animals.
  2. Treating and managing the health of animals properly.
  3. Avoid contacts with diseased animals.
  4. Store foods away from animals.
  5. Food from animal origin should be properly cooked and unpasteurized milk should be avoided. 
  6. Food meant for humans should be separated from those meant for animals.
  7. Cuts, wounds and abrasions on the skin should be properly treated.
  8. Animals should be kept as far as possible from the kitchen area.
  9. The feaces of animals should be properly cleaned and disposed and, the area disinfected.
  10. Medical attention should be sought whenever a zoonotic infection is suspected or after a bite or scratch from an animal. 
  11. Sick animals should be isolated and treated immediately to avoid the spread of the disease to other healthy animals and humans.
  12. Contact with animals blood, feaces and respiratory secretions should be minimized.

FURTHER READING

Aschengrau A and Seage G.R (2013). Essentials of Epidemiology in Public Health. Third edition. Jones and Bartleh Learning,

Gordis L (2013). Epidemiology. Fifth edition. Saunders Publishers, USA.

Nelson K.E and Williams C (2013). Infectious Disease Epidemiology: Theory and Practice. Third edition. Jones and Bartleh Learning. 

Riedel S (2004). Biological warfare and bioterrorism: a historical overview. BUMC Proceedings, 17:400-406. 

Rothman K.J, Greenland S and Lash T.L (2011). Modern Epidemiology. Third edition. Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

Schneider M.J (2011). Introduction to Public Health. Third edition. Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Sudbury, Massachusetts, USA.

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