Friday, 4 July 2014

Results of blood tests on pigs out today. #JE

Veterinary Services Department officers have taken 181 blood samples from 20 piggeries in Kampung Selamat, Seberang Prai, Penang, where the Japanese Encephalitis (JE) virus was detected.

Its director-general, Datuk Dr Mohamad Azmie Zakaria, said the samples had been sent to the Veterinary Research Institute in Ipoh, and the results were expected to be made known today.

The blood sampling taken on Tuesday involved the deployment of 10 teams, comprising 40 workers.

“As a precautionary measure, pig farms that tested positive for JE will be quarantined and the livestock will not be allowed to leave the farms,” he said at Wisma Tani yesterday.

He said about 199 pig farms in Penang and 542 pig farms in other states were also under surveillance.

Other farms in Seberang Prai, including those that bred bovine and poultry livestock would be also monitored.

Dr Azmie reminded pig farmers to ensure proper cleanliness and sanitation in their compounds to prevent the mosquito-borne disease from spreading the virus to the public.

He said under Section 31 of the Animal (Amendment) Act 2013, farmers could be fined up to RM25,000 for failing to report clinical signs of JE on their livestock to the department.

The piggery operators were also asked to report clinical symptoms of JE displayed by their workers to the nearest hospital.

Penang’s latest and third Japanese Encephalitis (JE) victim, a 29-month-old toddler, was yesterday reported to be out of danger.

Norain Nasuha Mohd Shukri, 29-month-old, tested positive for JE last Tuesday, 11 days after her parents admitted her for serious nausea and fever.

JE is a Culex mosquito-borne disease. It spreads through bites and animals, including pigs and herons.

Penang’s second JE case involved a 12-year-old boy who lives in Kampung Selamat, Tasek Gelugor.

Muhammad Ammar Muqrish Zulkifli was believed to have contracted the disease while camping near his school, located about 2km away from the state’s biggest pig farms which house 84 piggeries. He was confirmed positive for JE on May 23.


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