These days, according to media and health sources, a new strain of typhoid fever is spreading like wildfire in the country and they say it is resistant to treatment by antibiotics, so the general public needs to be extra vigilant about hygiene and the food they consume. Typhoid, a type of enteric fever, is spread by eating or drinking food or water contaminated with the feces of an infected person. Symptoms include fever, abdominal pain and headache.
Unfortunately, the general public is not conscious of the ill effects of typhoid and how to avoid getting the fever and there are an increasing number of patients visiting the hospitals, while a large number of deaths have been reported.
There have been warnings in various media messages to avoid water and edibles from an unreliable source but not many people take heed of them and unhygienic practices continue. The man in the picture is sprinkling cut pieces of sugarcane with water from a bucket to keep it ‘fresh’ and juicy. Heaven knows where he got this water from - in a report it stated that 80% of the water available in taps was contaminated and not fit for drinking - so he is actually contaminating the fruit. Also since the produce is not covered, you can well image the amount of germs that are picked up as he - or any other vendor with edibles - wheels his cart around the area where vehicles are going to and fro.
Many smaller streets and alleyways also see the passage of milch animals and horses and they leave excreta on the roads, which is also a source of germs and is spread around by passing traffic.
A forceful awareness campaign must be launched all over the country by the health departments by whatever means possible, to teach/warn the public about the dangers of eating unhygienic food of any kind till the epidemic is over or brought into control. Precious lives will be saved.