Sokoto veterinary doctors collaborate to unravel cause of unknown human disease

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A rapid response team of veterinarians has been dispatched from the Ministry of Animal Health and Fisheries Development Sokoto to conduct emergency surveillance of an unknown disease outbreak which have killed some people and affected scores of individuals in the state capital.

The veterinarians were dispatched with a view to establish if there is any link or otherwise between victims and possible contact with animals or their bye products.

This is coming on the heels of an alarm earlier raised by security reports, of an outbreak of Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease elsewhere in the country and looking at how zoonotic pathogens continue to jump species with the potential of transmission from animals to humans.

To this end, the dispatched team descended Helele area a hotspot of the outbreak, and the Sokoto live birds market to interact with community leaders, health workers, patient relatives and other relevant stakeholders so as to evaluate the said possible link.

The team also used the occasion to inform relevant stakeholders of the need to broaden the scope of their investigation in the spirit of one health approach and in face of emerging diseases that are emanating from possible interaction with animals or their bye products.

However, investigations have not yet revealed any link between the outbreak and possible interaction with animals, but this finding is just preliminary as other investigations are ongoing by the relevant stakeholders and no evidence of Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease (RHD) was established as well.

Animal owners are, however, enjoined to promptly report any suspicion of unusual animal disease to veterinary authorities for effective control measures.

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