National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) has urged Nigerians to exercise caution following the outbreak of anthrax, a deadly disease that can be contracted from infected animals or through contaminated products.
The Director-General of the agency, Dr. Agnes Asagbra, in a statement made available to journalists in Abuja, explained that anthrax is a serious infectious disease caused by a spore-forming bacterium, which mainly affects livestock particularly cattle, sheep and goats.
Asagbra stated that humans can become infected through contact with an infected animal or by inhaling spores. He called on the citizenry to beware of human transmission, which, according to her, is a zoonotic disease caused by germs that have been reported in Ghana.
She urged the general public to avoid direct contact with sick or dead animals, especially those exhibiting symptoms associated with anthrax, adding that farmers, herders, and individuals involved in animal husbandry must take extra care and seek veterinary assistance.
“If the disease is not identified and treated promptly, it can cause pneumonia, serious lung issues, breathing difficulties, shock, and death. Symptoms of anthrax include flu-like symptoms like coughing, fever, and muscular aches,” Asagbra stressed.
The Director General emphasised that proper hygienic practices should be followed when handling and processing animal products, recommending that farmers and others should wear protective clothing, such as gloves, when handling raw animal hides.
“We also implore all stakeholders in the food and agricultural industry to prioritise safety measures and adhere to biosafety regulations in to safeguard the health of our citizens. It is crucial for all Nigerians to remain calm but vigilant.”
Credit: The Guardian
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