GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – Salmonella is a concern of the four key diarrheal diseases. Salmonellosis is a disease caused by the bacteria Salmonella.
Diarrheal diseases are the most common illnesses resulting from unsafe food. Foodborne diseases can be severe, especially for young children.
The five World Health Organization keys to Safer Food to prevent food poisoning are: keep clean; separate raw and cooked; cook thoroughly; keep food at safe temperatures; and use safe water and raw materials.
The Collective Prevention Service (CPS), a department in the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour, is advising households and especially restaurants to increase and be vigilant in applying on a high level basic food hygiene practices, such as cooking food thoroughly, as a preventative measure against salmonellosis.
The current situation with challenges related to a stable power supply in order to keep and maintain refrigerated/frozen food, as well as water, places considerable pressure on providing safe food for consumption.
Salmonellosis in humans is generally contracted through the consumption of contaminated food of animal origin (mainly eggs, meat, poultry, and milk), although other foods, including green vegetables contaminated by manure, have been implicated in its transmission.
In some cases, particularly in children and elderly patient’s dehydration can become severe and life-threatening. CPS recommends the following, that safe food handling at home be applied at all times: Ensure food is properly cooked and still hot when served; Avoid raw milk and products made from raw milk. Drink only pasteurized or boiled milk.
Avoid ice unless it is made from safe water; When the safety of drinking water is questionable, bring the water to boil and boil for at least 1 minute, or if this is not possible, use 2 teaspoons of Clorox per one gallon of water and leave for 30 minutes prior to consumption.
Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently using soap, in particular after contact with pets or farm animals, after using the toilet or taking care of ill persons.
Thoroughly wash fruits and vegetables carefully, particularly if they are eaten raw. If possible, vegetables and fruits should be peeled.
Both professional and domestic food handlers should be vigilant while preparing food and should observe hygienic rules of food preparation.
Professional food handlers who suffer from fever, diarrhea, vomiting or visible infected skin lesions should report such to their supervisor/employer immediately.
Frequently and properly wash your hands at all times and especially if you have diarrhea wash your hands and drink a lot of water to avoid dehydration and consult your physician as diarrhea persist.
For additional information, you can contact CPS at 542-2078 or 542-3003.