Eid-ul-Azha is approaching but the authorities are yet to devise a mechanism for animal inspection at the Karachi livestock market amid a frightening threat of Congo virus, which has recently claimed several precious lives across the country.
People in Karachi too are scared of the deadly Crimean-Congo Haemorrhagic Fever and hesitant to visit the livestock market off Super Highway and the recent downpour has further worsened the situation. It is true that people must be extra vigilant to protect themselves from the fatal infection; however, frequent misconceptions about the virus, its exposure and spread must be removed. Read the suggestions below proposed by the infection control committee of the Aga Khan University Hospital regarding what you must do and wear during qurbani this year and how you must detect Congo virus symptoms.
What you must know about Congo
1- Remember Congo virus fever is spread by the bite of ticks
2- They are fed on an infected animal or from exposure to blood or tissues during or immediately after slaughtering an infected animal
3- An infected animal may appear healthy
4- Eating or preparing meat from an infected animal is safe
When buying or caring for animals
1- Wear light-coloured, full sleeve clothes (ideally buttoned) and shoes with socks
2- You may apply any insect repellent on the exposed areas of the body
3- Take a shower and change your clothes as soon as you return home
Read More: Eid-ul-Azha to be Celebrated On Sep 25
Safety measures during qurbani
1- Cover your mouth and nose during the initial qurbani stage
2- Do not rub your eyes or nose, if your hands are blood stained
3- Try to keep your hands clean by washing frequently
4- If soap and water are unavailable, use plain water or tissues to clean blood
5- You can also use commercially available alcohol hand rub
General symptoms of Congo virus
1- Early symptoms are sudden high fever with muscle aches, backache and headache
2- Symptoms usually develop about one to three days after exposure to ticks (rarely up to nine days) and five to seven days after exposure to blood (rarely up to 14 days)
3- Since other infections (for example Dengue) have similar symptoms, one must contact a health-care provider when ill
Please adopt the aforementioned expert safety measures during Eid-ul-Azha 2016 and stay safe and healthy.