Dakshina Kannada administration keeping close watch of African Swine flu infection among pigs

Published - November 05, 2022 01:52 am IST - MANGALURU

Health Department personnel carrying out a fever survey in parts of Neermarga panchayat limits on the outskirts of Mangaluru.

Health Department personnel carrying out a fever survey in parts of Neermarga panchayat limits on the outskirts of Mangaluru.

The Dakshina Kannada district administration has said that African swine flu noticed among pigs is not contagious to other animals and human beings. There is no harm in consuming pork that is properly cooked, it said.

It was on October 13 that a few among the 200 pigs reared on the premises of Prakash, a resident of Kelrai, at Neermarga on the outskirts of the city, were found having fever and other symptoms of African swine flu.

Deputy Director of Animal Husbandry Arun Vandse said samples of the infected pigs were sent to the designated laboratory in Bengaluru, which confirmed the infection on October 31. This viral infection is highly contagious among pigs and it is fatal for those animals. There is no vaccine against this viral infection, he said.

By October 31, Dr. Vandse said about 120 pigs of Prakash had died. They took permission of the Deputy Commissioner and culled the remaining 80 pigs. These pigs were buried on the same premises and the area was sealed.

Dr. Vandse said a radius of 1 km from the premises had been declared as an infected area. A team of personnel had been engaged in disinfecting the area. The lone meat shop of Prakash in the area has been sealed for the timebeing.

The official said 10-km radius from the infected area had been declared as a surveillance zone where department personnel had asked meat shops not to send pork outside or get pork from other areas. Awareness activities have been undertaken asking people to consume pork after properly cooking it. Pig farm operators have been asked not to offer pigs kitchen waste from the infected area.

Fever survey

Meanwhile, personnel from Health and Family Welfare Department, as a precautionary measure, have carried out two rounds of fever survey of 96 persons in the area coming under the Neermarga Panchayat.

D.G. Chirag, the Medical Officer of Vamanjoor Primary Health Centre, said the first round of the survey was done soon after symptoms of viral infection were seen in pigs in October second week. “Though there is no chance of this virus infecting humans, we are continuously monitoring the situation,” Dr. Chirag said. They have so far not found this infection among people in the vicinity, including Prakash and his family members. Samples of the groundwater in the vicinity were being sent for testing, Dr. Chirag added.

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