17September2014

Articles

African Swine Fever Not The Same As Swine Flu –Vet. Services

Deputy Director of Veterinary Services Directorates, Dr. Stephen Ockling has bemoaned attempts to compare the African Swine Fever with Swine Flu.

The outbreak of the African Swine Fever has killed about 1,192 pigs in the Ellembelle District of the Western Region, leaving residents in fear.

Speaking in an interview with Alhassan Suhuyini on the Gold Power Drive Monday, Dr. Stephen Ockling said Swine Fever, unlike Swine Flu does not pose any danger to human life.

“African Swine Fever does not pose any threat or public risk. It is not the same as swine flu as some people are making it look like. If it is consumed, the human being will not fall sick or die. But we don’t encourage the consumption of dead animals,” he disclosed.

According to Dr. Ockling, the disease affects only domestic and wild pigs, noting that pigs suffering from the disease experience bleeding and fever.

“When the pigs are affected, you will see bleeding from the nose and anus. Then there is a very high fever, they loss appetite and have diarrhea which is stained with blood, respiratory distress…and eventually the pigs die as a result of respiratory failure and the bleeding. It takes a period of two to three days for the pigs to die,” he schooled.

He was quick to add that there is no cure or prevention for the disease, stressing the need to get rid of affected pigs to prevent the spread of the disease.

Dr. Ockling also disclosed that his outfit has banned the movement and slaughter of pigs within the Ellembelle District and its environs in order to prevent the disease from affecting other pigs.

He said the Veterinary Services in conjunction with the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) has disinfected all pigs in the affected communities and an active surveillance team put in place to monitor the situation.

The Deputy Director of Veterinary Services Directorates, Dr. Stephen Ockling, is entreating pig farmers across the country to be alert and report cases of the African Swine Fever to the right authority.

For his part, Deputy National Coordinator at NADMO in charge of Technical, Mr. Ebenezer Dosoo, said the outbreak of the disease is not a national disaster.

He however cautioned that if proper care and attention is not devoted towards controlling the disease, it may spread to other parts of the country.

NADMO is urging voluntary disaster management groups and the general public to intensify education on the causes of the disease and the need to prevent it from spreading.

In a related development, Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture in charge of livestock, Dr. Hannah Bisiw, disclosed that her outfit is considering compensating farmers who lost their livestock as a result of the disease.

By: Joyce Vidza/www.myradiogoldlive.com