Public warned over ZIKA virus

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Health Minister Joseph Kasonde says there is no Zika virus in Zambia but is urging the public to take precautions.

Dr Kasonde says members of the public should allow their homes to be sprayed under the residual spraying for malaria to prevent the transmission of the deadly Zika virus.

The Minister said the best form of prevention against the Zika virus is protection against mosquito bites.

The Zika Virus is transmitted through mosquito bites.

And Dr Kasonde says there is no restriction on travel to and from Zika Virus affected countries.

The Minister has however, appealed to travelers to seek professional advice on potential risks and measures to reduce exposure to mosquito bites.

In a ministerial statement to Parliament, Dr Kasonde has also encouraged women of reproductive age to observe instructions on how to prevent mosquito bites.

There is an outbreak of the Zika disease in some South American countries.

And the Ministry of Health has bought two accident rescue vehicles and a command unit worth Eleven point three -million Kwacha.

The Hi-tech vehicles will reduce response time to road accidents.

Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary Peter Mwaba says the rescue vehicles will lessen challenges faced by emergency response teams during road accidents.

Dr MWABA is optimistic that the equipment will ensure a coordinated and timely response to accidents.

He said this in a speech read for him by Ministry of Health Deputy Director Mobile Health Services Chabwera Shumba.

Dr. Mwaba has revealed that one rescue vehicle will be stationed at Kabwe General Hospital due to the number of road accidents on the Great North road.

He said the other rescue vehicle and command unit will be stationed at Levy Mwanawasa General Hospital.

Meanwhile Central Province Provincial Medical Officer Rose Mwanza said the newly procured equipment will reduce response time to accidents and help save lives.

Health authorities on the Copperbelt are concerned with the rising number of dog bites in the province.

Acting Copperbelt Provincial Medical Officer Kakungu Simpungwe

says the number of people being bitten by stray dogs in the province is worrisome.

Dr. Simpungwe has since called on local authorities in the province

to the apply law and monitor stray dogs.

She was speaking during the Copperbelt Provincial Epidemic preparedness and health infrastructure development Meeting in Kitwe.

Speaking at the same meeting, Kennedy Chibwe from the Provincial

Medical Office informed the meeting that the Copperbelt has not

recorded any disease outbreaks such as Cholera in the past 5 years.

Dr. Chibwe said although there have been some sporadic cases of

disease outbreaks such as typhoid, dysentery and measles in some

districts, the province has managed to contain them.

He has called for concerted efforts from stakeholders to ensure

that the province does not record any disease outbreaks.

Meanwhile, Copperbelt Permanent Secretary Reverend Howard Sikwela has directed the health authorities to ensure that there are no disease outbreaks as the country prepares to hold its general election in August this year.

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