The Department of Health announced that South Africa had an outbreak of the food-borne disease listeriosis.
Here are 10 things YOU need to know about this disease:
• Washing hands before handling food and during food preparation.
• Separating raw food from cooked food.
• Cooking food thoroughly and never eating half-cooked or uncooked food‚ especially meat products. Food that does not need cooking needs to be thoroughly washed with clean water.
• Keep food at safe temperatures.
• Clean water for domestic use at all times and use pasteurised milk products. In domestic situations where pasteurisation is not possible‚ boil the milk prior to use.
The most common foods to be contaminated are raw or unpasteurised milk as well as soft cheeses‚ or vegetables‚ processed foods and ready-to-eat meats and smoked fish products.
Symptoms for someone who has the disease include flu-like illness‚ diarrhoea accompanied by a fever‚ general body pains‚ vomiting and weakness. It can also lead to infection of the bloodstream‚ or septiceamia‚ and meningitis - an infection of the brain.
Listeriosis is treatable and preventable.