Govt takes action against deadly disease
Johannesburg - The government will start vaccinating livestock against Rift Valley Fever in Kei Mouth and Haga Haga in the Eastern Cape this week, The Dispatch Online reported on Wednesday.
"This was revealed to the Dispatch on Monday by Dr Cebisa Mnqeta, a senior manager in the Eastern Cape Veterinary Services, after an outbreak of the deadly disease was confirmed last week," the news website said.
Officials from the Amathole district municipality and the department of agriculture met farmers on Tuesday to discuss issues surrounding the disease.
"There are fears that uninformed community members may handle infected livestock, thereby transmitting the disease from animals to humans," the Dispatch reported.
The disease is a viral zoonosis, which means it is an animal disease which can be transmitted to humans.
Symptoms of the disease in humans are flu-like fever, muscle pain, joint pain and headaches, neck stiffness, sensitivity to light, loss of appetite and vomiting. It currently has no treatment and can result in death.
In most cases the symptoms usually last from four to seven days, after which the immune response kicks in with antibodies and the virus gradually disappears from the blood.
An outbreak can be triggered by heavy and persistent rains or flooding.