Mr. Mansur Mohammed Zacharia, the Sunyani Municipal Disease Control Officer, has called for stepped-up media education and good sanitation practices, as part of aggressive measures to control the spread of elephantiasis in the Brong-Ahafo Region, as nine cases were recorded in the Municipality last year.
He said though the nine sufferers have been put on treatment, it’s a wake-up call for preventive efforts towards its spread and containment to be put in place, since cases of the communicable disease according to disease surveillance reports, have also been found in other parts of Brong-Ahafo – Wenchi and Dormaa Ahenkro.
Elephantiasis, a parasitic infection that causes extreme swelling in the legs and arms, is spread by infected Anopheles mosquitoes from human-human.
Mr. Zacharia told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview in Sunyani that the debilitating nature of the disease can cause deformities to its victims but assured that it is treatable adding "it is however unfortunate that bad sanitation practices was fueling its spread".
He denied as superstitious the widely-held conception that elephantiasis is a curse or linked to witchcraft and emphasized that it is a contagious disease which could be brought under control, provided the communities ensure good and proper sanitation practices.
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