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 Table of Contents  
SHORT COMMUNICATION
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 79-80

Ensuring prevention of transmission of corona virus disease 2019 from animals to humans


1 Member of the Medical Education Unit and Institute Research Council, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV)—Deemed to be University, Nellikuppam, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission13-May-2020
Date of Acceptance17-May-2020
Date of Web Publication19-Jun-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava
Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV) – Deemed to be University, Tiruporur - Guduvancherry Main Road, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu.
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/mgmj.MGMJ_35_20

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  Abstract 

The details about the origin of the Corona Virus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) outbreak is still not clear and there are multiple gaps which needs to be bridged to prevent the re-introduction of the virus in the future. It has been hypothesized that bats were the ecological reservoir, while the transmission of the virus to humans has been via an intermediate animal host, which is not yet recognized. It is of paramount importance to prevent the probability of disease transmission from animal hosts to human, either in live animal markets or where animal products are sold. Moreover, the safety of the people working in these markets as employees or vendors are also extremely important. In conclusion, the pace with which COVID-19 pandemic is spreading, it becomes extremely important to ensure that all forms of transmission from animals to humans in the future should be discouraged. This will essentially require counseling of the workers and buyers about the do's and don'ts in animal market and better supervision of the ongoing activities.

Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic, animal, hand hygiene, World Health Organization


How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Ensuring prevention of transmission of corona virus disease 2019 from animals to humans. MGM J Med Sci 2020;7:79-80

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Ensuring prevention of transmission of corona virus disease 2019 from animals to humans. MGM J Med Sci [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Sep 29];7:79-80. Available from: http://www.mgmjms.com/text.asp?2020/7/2/79/287167




  Introduction Top


The details about the origin of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the outbreak are still not clear, and there are multiple gaps that need to be bridged to prevent the reintroduction of the virus in the future. It is worth noting that the entire human mankind has become susceptible to a single virus, and the disease that started as an outbreak in a single city has been declared initially as a public health emergency of international concern and subsequently as a pandemic.[1] All these decisions were made because of the rapid rise in the caseload, which has now increased to 2,397,217 cases and deaths of 162,956 people who were having the disease.[1] The global case fatality rate of the disease has increased to 6.8%, and the cases of the disease have now been reported across 213 nations and territories in the world.[1]


  UNCERTAINTY ABOUT COVID-19 ORIGIN Top


The first case of the disease was reported in December 2019, and since then research is underway to gain insights about the epidemiological attributes of the disease and the potential source of the outbreak.[2] On tracing the initial causes of the disease, which were reported, it was found that almost all of them (e.g., stall owners, employees in the market, and regular buyers) had some link with a wholesale seafood market in Wuhan city, and the same thing was further confirmed on analyzing the environmental samples from the market.[2],[3] Furthermore, it has been hypothesized that bats were the ecological reservoir, although the transmission of the virus to humans has been via an intermediate animal host, which is not yet recognized.[4],[5]


  Strategies to prevent transmission from animals Top


However, amid all this background information available, it is of paramount importance to prevent the probability of disease transmission from animal hosts to humans, either in live animal markets or where animal products are sold.[2] The first and the foremost recommendation deals with the use of general hygiene measures whenever a person visits live animal markets or markets where animal products are sold. Hygiene refers to practicing regular handwashing with soap and water after touching animals or their products, not touching eyes, nose, and mouth with contaminated hands, and not coming in contact with sick animals or the products that are already decaying. At the same time, no contact should be made with other stray animals that are living in the market or with contaminated animal waste or fluids or soil or surfaces or market facilities. All these become extremely essential actions as we discourage the risk of potential transmission.[2],[4]

The next important domain to reduce the chances of transmission is by avoiding the consumption of raw or incompletely cooked animal products. Furthermore, all standard food safety practices should strictly be adhered to whenever we are dealing with raw meat or milk as they can turn out to be a potential source of cross-contamination. It is very important that none of the sick animals should be slaughtered for the purpose of eating, and under all circumstances, the dead animals should be handled very carefully, especially in their burial process, and all forms of potential contact with animal fluids should be discouraged. The veterinarians have a crucial role to play in the entire process and should keep strict supervision and report to the concerned authorities for any unusual incident.[2],[3],[4],[5]

Moreover, the safety of the people working in these markets as employees or vendors is also extremely important, and they all should be encouraged to maintain good personal hygiene, including frequent handwashing. All these workers should be motivated to wear protective equipment (such as gowns or gloves), whenever they have to handle live animals or their products. Furthermore, the instruments and the working place in these markets should be periodically disinfected, at least once daily. These workers should wash their clothes daily after their work and ensure that none of the family members are exposed to contaminated clothes or other items. Thus, the ideal thing would be to keep all these protective clothes and other items in the workplace itself and not to carry them back to the household.[2]


  Conclusion Top


In conclusion, the pace with which COVID-19 pandemic is spreading, it becomes extremely important to ensure that all forms of transmission from animals to humans in the future should be discouraged. This will essentially require counseling of the workers and buyers about the dos and don’ts of the animal market and better supervision of the ongoing activities.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
World Health Organization. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Situation Report—92. Data as received by WHO from national authorities by 10:00 CEST, 21 April 2020. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO; 2020. p. 12. Available from: https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/situation-reports/20200421-sitrep-92-covid-19.pdf?sfvrsn=38e6b06d_6. [Last accessed on 2020 April 23].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
World Health Organization. WHO recommendations to reduce risk of transmission of emerging pathogens from animals to humans in live animal markets or animal product markets (26 March 2020). Geneva, Switzerland: WHO; 2020. Available from: https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus/who-recommendations-to-reduce-risk-of-transmission-of-emerging-pathogens-from-animals-to-humans-in-live-animal-markets. [Last accessed on 2020 April 22].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Malik YS, Sircar S, Bhat S, Sharun K, Dhama K, Dadar M, et al. Emerging novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)—Current scenario, evolutionary perspective based on genome analysis and recent developments. Vet Q 2020;40:68-76.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Zhou P, Yang XL, Wang XG, Hu B, Zhang L, Zhang W, et al. A pneumonia outbreak associated with a new coronavirus of probable bat origin. Nature 2020;579:270-3.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Cyranoski D. Mystery deepens over animal source of coronavirus. Nature 2020;579:18-9.  Back to cited text no. 5
    




 

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