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Fish not cause of outbreak of Acute Gastroenteritis in Pongching village: DC Noklak

Nagaland News

Food contamination due to Streptococcus Aureus, E. Coli & Yeast & Mold: SPHL lab

DIMAPUR, JUNE 27: DC, Longleng, has informed all business establishments and residents of Longleng town that following a thorough investigation and analysis conducted by the State Public Health Laboratory and the Public Health Engineering Department (PHED) regarding the recent outbreak of Acute Gastroenteritis in Pongching village, it has been determined that the suspected source of contaminated fish is not responsible for the outbreak.
Based on the findings of the analysis, it has been established that the fish sample does not contain any harmful contaminants that could be linked to the occurrence of acute gastroenteritis. As a result, there is no evidence to suggest that the outbreak is related to the fish shops in the area.
It may be mentioned that 43 persons of Pongching village, Longleng were admitted to District Hospital, Longleng on June 15 for medical treatment on suspicion of food poisoning. As per the report of State Public Health Laboratory, Nagaland, Kohima and CMO, Longleng, it was stated that food contamination was due to unhygienic food handling and presence of E. Coli and Staphylococcus Aureus Bacteria.
Deputy Commissioner, Longleng ordered the immediate reopening of all fish shops/establishments in Longleng town. This decision has been taken after careful consideration of the investigation results, and it is deemed safe for normal business operations to resume without further delay.
All shop owners and residents are to continue following standard hygiene practices, such as proper hand washing, food safety measures, maintaining a clean environment and to remain vigilant and report any unusual health concerns to the appropriate authorities for timely action.
The fish shop at Longleng town, which was sealed earlier, was re-opened by District Administration, along with Chamber of Commerce and Longleng Police on June 26.
Meanwhile, Chief Medical Officer, Longleng, stated that following receipt of SPHL Report on Food Samples (Fish) collected from Pongching villagers affected by Acute Gastroenteritis outbreak, the food contamination was determined by the SPHL lab to be bacterial, namely Streptococcus Aureus, E. Coli & Yeast and Mold.
Presence of S Aureus in cooked food indicates unhygienic handling of food, the CMO stated adding presence of E. Coli in cooked food is an indicator of fecal contamination and a sign of unhygienic handling of food.
The CMO further stated that food borne molds and yeast may be hazardous to human health because of the ability to produce toxin metabolite known as mycotoxins.
Pesticides were found to be below the maximum residue limit as per Food Safety and Standard Regulation, 2021.
CMO’s Office, Longleng, advised the public on ways to prevent such outbreak in the future by maintaining clean hygiene, specially handwashing (before and after handling animal products), to properly wash the utensils that are used for handling animal products, not to consume raw or partially cooked animal products, to drink filtered or boiled water and to seek medical attention without delay.
(Page News Service)